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Murphy questions Poots' mismanagement of health budget

25 August, 2014 - by Conor Murphy

Sinn Féin MP Conor Murphy has questioned health minister Edwin Poots' ability to manage his department's budget. 

The Newry and Armagh MP said; 

"While there are obvious challenges for the health service in an era of Tory cuts to public services, it is becoming increasingly clear that Edwin Poots is incapable of managing his department's budget. 

"After years of berating the previous health minister for demanding more money, Edwin Poots has been unable to control his department's finances, despite an increased budget. 

"He has been given more than £200 million in additional funding in successive monitoring rounds, on top of an increased budget, but still he is demanding £160 million more. 

"His own party colleague, finance minister Simon Hamilton, has publicly criticised Edwin Poots' budget handling after an overspend of £13 million in the last monitoring round. And an underspend of £10 million which he declared too late for it to be reallocated. 

“At the same time Minister Poots pays out millions in bonuses and in fees to private companies.

"Clearly Simon Hamilton is unconvinced by Edwin Poots' figures as he allocated his department £33 million rather than the £40 million bid for.

"The DUP is obviously divided on their minister's mismanagement of the health service. 

"Health is a hugely important issues and must not be hostage to the internal problems of the DUP."

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