British government has no plan on equality – Murphy
Sinn Féin MLA Conor Murphy has tonight accused the British government of having no plan to restore the political institutions on the basis of equality and called for an end to the Tories’ support for the DUP’s blockade on rights.
Speaking after British Secretary of State Karen Bradley addressed the British House of Commons tonight Conor Murphy said:
“It’s clear that neither the British Secretary of State nor the British Tory government has any plan to restore the political institutions on the basis of rights and equality following the DUP’s collapse of the political talks and its failure to deliver on the draft agreement.
“Today the British Secretary of State totally ignored her government’s responsibility under internationally binding treaties for equality in this jurisdiction.
“Instead the British government remains wedded to the DUP’s blockade on rights, language rights, marriage rights and the right to a coroner’s inquest which are enjoyed by citizens every where else in these islands.
“There is an onus therefore on the two governments to deliver on outstanding rights and agreements and ending discrimination.
“The Sinn Féin leadership has made it clear to both British Prime Minister Theresa May and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar that direct rule is not an option and only power sharing institutions within the Good Friday Agreement framework can command the confidence of the wider community.
“They should move immediately therefore to convene the British Irish Intergovernmental Conference to deal with the equality and rights issues which are at the heart of the political impasse in the north.”
Conor Murphy welcomed the cap on the RHI scheme and commented on the issue of MLAs’ wages.
“Sinn Féin welcomes the continued cap on the RHI scheme. This botched scheme which was overseen by successive DUP ministers had the potential to take more than a half a billion pounds out of our public services.
“This scandal remains the subject of an ongoing public inquiry set up by Sinn Féin’s Máirtín Ó Muilleoir.
“We note today’s announcement on MLAs’ wages. Sinn Féin has consistently made it clear that MLAs’ pay should be reviewed if the Assembly is not re-established in the short-term and that is clearly not the case following the DUP’s reneging on an agreement.
“Nevertheless, all Sinn Féin representatives, whether paid or not, will continue to work extremely hard on behalf of the people we represent.” ENDS/CRÍOCH