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Assembly costs down to British government suspension

19 January, 2005

Sinn Féin newly appointed Assembly group leader, Upper Bann MLA John O'Dowd has said that the £53 million cost in maintaining the institutions are a result of the British government's unilateral suspension the institutions.

Mr O'Dowd said:

"The political institutions were brought down by the British government 27 months ago amid allegation of a Stormont spy ring. 27 months ago the institutions were brought down by unfounded PSNI allegations.

"Today the prospect of a quick return is again at risk because of PSNI allegations which have not been supported by any evidence.

"It is a disgrace that in effect the British government has spent £53 million to maintain the fiction of the Stormont spy ring. It is the British government that are denying our elected politicians the right to get on with the job they were elected to do. It is a disgrace that £53 million that should be used to make good decisions based on the democratic will of the people here is instead being used to disguise the undemocratic and bad decisions being made by unelected direct rule ministers." ENDS

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