Alliance welcomes opportunity for Assembly to discuss victims and equality matters

Alliance Party Deputy Leader, Naomi Long MLA, has welcomed the Secretary of State’s move to allow a debate on victims and equality matters to take place in the Assembly next week. Peter Hain’s decision today to allow the Assembly plenary followed Sinn Fein’s attempt to prevent a debate on the matter in last Friday’s Preparation for Government Committee.

The East Belfast Assembly Member said: “I welcome the Secretary of State’s decision, as it will allow the Assembly to discuss matters which are of paramount importance to the political process in Northern Ireland.

“Issues regarding victims, rights and equality have been thoughtfully discussed in committee meetings throughout summer, and I am glad that the Assembly will be given the chance to debate these subjects next Tuesday.

“Sinn Fein had disgracefully tried to block this vital debate at last Friday’s Preparation for Government Committee.

“Sinn Fein profess to be committed to protecting rights and challenging injustice. They showed that their concern on these matters is only superficial when they tried to deny the Assembly the chance to debate issues which must be examined if the political impasse is to be broken.

“Sinn Fein gave their word that they would not block any Assembly plenaries, but they went back on their word when DUP made things difficult for them.

“If Sinn Fein want the process to move forward this autumn, they must stop reneging on promises and start being constructive.”


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