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SDLP taking crumbs off the DUP table

24 May, 2006

Sinn Féin Agriculture and Rural Development Spokesperson, Fermanagh South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew has said that not only are the SDLP falling into the trap of engaging in Wendy House politics but now they are taking crumbs off the DUP table.

Ms Gildernew said:

"Sinn Féin take the strong view that it is dishonest to try and mislead people that the Hain has any power to do anything other than elect a power-sharing Executive.

"Prior to May 15th it was clear that there was a strong consensus between Sinn Féin and at least some members of the SDLP that it was a mistake to engage in Wendy House politics in the Hain Assembly. Now the SDLP have been humiliated by being forced to accept crumbs off the DUP table.

"This was always the danger. That the DUP would try and suck people into their preferred model of a shadow Assembly possibly leading to the corporate type Assembly that they have also mooted. Sinn Fein expended considerable effort earlier this year moving the two governments away from this position that represents a serious dilution of the power-sharing Executive core of the Good Friday Agreement.

"The danger for the SDLP is that they are now encouraging the DUP with the mistaken belief that people are prepared to except less than the Good Friday Agreement. Sinn Féin will defend the agreement. Our sole focus is the election of the First and Deputy First Ministers and power-sharing Executive. This is the only way that we will be able remove power from British direct rule ministers and undo the damage being caused by their bad decisions." ENDS

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