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New Direct rule Ministers must abandon failures of predecessors

12 May, 2005

Sinn Féin West Tyrone MP Pat Doherty has challenged the new team of direct rule ministers to abandon the failures and mistakes of recent direct rule ministers.

Mr Doherty said:

"Now that we have finally lost the totally incompetent John Speller and hapless Barry Gardiner there is a responsibility and challenge to Lord Rooker, Shaun Woodward and Peter Hain to abandon failures of their predecessors.

"Across the political spectrum there is opposition to the unjust water tax and there is public outcry about the cuts in frontline education services. The challenge to the new set of British direct rule ministers is to listen to the democratic voice of people living in this part of Ireland.

"We need to break the political deadlock surrounding the all-Ireland agenda so that we can deliver better public service, particularly for people living in border communities and make economies of scale savings.

"We also need to revisit the disastrous decision of direct rule ministers to abandon the Children's Fund that ring fenced money for our children and young people.

"We also need to get rid of the red tape that is crippling some of our departments, particularly DARD and DSD. It is vital that we finally get to grips with the huge number of undemocratic quangos that wield far too much power.

"In the time ahead Sinn Fein will continue to strive for political progress to see the reestablishment of the local institutions and the return of decision making power to locally elected and democratically accountable people. Until then the message for our undemocratic direct rule ministers is 'reject the failures Speller and Gardiner and listen to the democratic voice of people'." ENDS

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