‘DUP must end Paisley silence’ – O’Neill
Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Michelle O’Neill has called on the DUP leadership ‘to end its silence’ on the Ian Paisley scandal after the North Antrim MP’s suspension from Westminster was confirmed today.
Michelle O’Neill was commenting after MPs voted to endorse a 30-day suspension on the DUP MP over his links to the Sri Lankan government.
She said: “Ian Paisley’s colleagues in Westminster have overwhelmingly voted to impose the most serious sanction handed down to any MP since 1949. When you consider some of the sleaze, corruption and criminal scandals that have engulfed the British parliament during that time, that is quite extraordinary.
“Despite this, the DUP leadership have yet to give any indication whether the party will be taking any action against Ian Paisley. We are told that party officers met at the weekend but all we have had since then is a bizarre defence of his actions from Sammy Wilson.
“The DUP leadership must end its silence on this issue. They need to be clear as to whether they are prepared to defend a lack of integrity in public office.
“They need to be clear whether they believe it was acceptable for one of their MPs to be actively lobbying on behalf of a regime that carried out mass murder, war crimes and gross human rights abuses.
“And if indeed this scandal does lead to a by-election in North Antrim, the DUP need to be clear whether they will endorse Ian Paisley as a candidate, given his clear intention to stand.”