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DUP solely responsible for failure to elect speaker

13 October, 2014 - by Caitríona Ruane

Sinn Féin MLA and Chief Whip Caitriona Ruane has said that the failure to elect a speaker to the Assembly rests solely with the DUP reneging on a deal done in 2011 which would have seen Mitchel McLaughlin elected.

 Ms. Ruane said,

 “In 2011 during the election of William Hay as speaker it was agreed that Sinn Féin would assume the post in May 2014.  The DUP endorsed this deal and this is a matter of public record.

 “The refusal today to honour that deal by refusing to back Mitchel McLaughlin raises serious questions about DUP sincerity in any negotiations process.

 “Sinn Féin as the largest Nationalist party is entitled to the speaker role and as such we were not prepared to vote for any other candidate as to do so would be to accept DUP bad faith and to acquiesce to their anti-equality agenda.

 “These institutions were set up on the premise of power sharing and the latest decision by the DUP to pull out of this deal highlights that they are still not up to the task of sharing power.”

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