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Mitchel McLaughlin to Chair Finance Scrutiny Committee

18 April, 2007

Sinn Féin South Antrim MLA, Mitchel McLaughlin is to Chair the powerful Assembly Finance and Personnel scrutiny Committee.

Commenting on his nomination Mitchel McLaughlin said:

"This is an important position and I pledge to carry out my functions diligently on behalf of the public. I will endeavour to ensure that the Committee oversee the fair and equitable distribution of financial resources required to reinvigorate the economy and deliver proper public services.

"The re-establishment of the political institutions will present us with many opportunities to address the neglect of essential services and infrastructure experienced during the last 35 years of almost continuous British Direct Rule.

"Recent developments have demonstrated the advantages of building an all-Ireland economy and I will promote the continuation of this approach at every opportunity. It is important that Ministers North and South collaborate in utilising financial resources for the benefit of everyone who lives on this island.

"I look forward to working harmoniously with the Minister and colleagues from all parties to deliver maximum benefits to all.

"Sinn Fein has set out its stall in relation to both a substantial Peace Dividend and increased fiscal flexibility. The Finance Committee will be in a position to examine both these key issues and to ensure proper accountability and transparency.

"The committee will also have to look in detail at the outcome of the Comprehensive Spending Review because this will have long-term implications for the spending powers of all departments." ENDS

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