Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Sinn Fein call DUP Hypocrites and the British Government Liars

26 July, 2006

Sinn Fein Education Spokesperson Michael Ferguson challenged both the British Government Education Minister Marie Eagle and the DUP at last night's Lisburn Council monthly meeting on the erosion of education and learning services despite the huge under-spend by the British Government on the one hand and the failure of the DUP to face up to replacing the British Government with our own Minister.

Commenting he said,

"It is absolutely shocking to learn that British Minister Marie Eagle could hold back on £68 million pounds of under spent money that could have easily been used to clear all of the debt accrued by education boards that have resulted from historic underfunding.

"This British Minister has just walked through our door and sacked all of the democratically elected members on the SEELB because they refused to close special needs units and cancel other special needs services for the most vulnerable and needy of our children and young people.

"The decision to do this and not use the £68 million pound to clear so called debt and pay for needy services reinforces Sinn Fein's corporate decision to oppose cuts on all Boards and to challenge the spurious reasons given by the British government for running down services.

" It is also illogical for the DUP to continue refusing to support us in the nomination of our own local education minister because they are supporting us in opposing cuts and refusing to do the British government's dirty work.

"It makes no sense for the DUP to join us and tell the British Government no to cuts and to then sit back and let Commissioners to make the cuts in their absence. The DUP are increasing the hardship imposed our children and young people by failing to have the courage to elect our own local minister and it is hypocritical of them to blame the British and then stand back and let them continue to erode our education system when they can stop them by doing it them selves." ENDS

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