Action against funding long over due – Alliance

Alliance leader David Ford MLA has told Social Development Minister Margaret Richie that her ultimatum given to the UDA over its funding is long overdue. Richie has stated that if the UDA does not start decommissioning within 60 days then their funding will be withdrawn.

David Ford said: “I do not believe that the Minister is quite delivering but I do welcome her statement even though it is long over due. I do however believe that she is asking the UDA to do something that they should already have done.

“She must stick to her ultimatum and if nothing has happened within 60 days then I will be making sure that she cuts funding that my party has always opposed. If the UDA is not transforming then there is no justification for money for conflict transformation.

“In the wake of the violence in Carrick and Kilcooley I would have preferred that the Minister had cut the funding immediately. I do however get the feeling that the Minister does not support the funding that was given under direct rule.

“I am not saying that these loyalist areas should not get funding but I am saying that any funding can not be given through the UDA.

“My message to the UDA is that there is no longer any justification for the existence of their organisation even by their own twisted logic.”

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