Dickson questions the timing of RHI claimants

Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson has questioned the timing of the release of RHI claimants.

East Antrim MLA Mr Dickson was speaking after the Department for the Economy published the list of companies claiming the non-domestic RHI scheme. It contained the names of all companies which received support payments under the scheme from its opening in 2012 to February 28, 2017.

He said the release needed to be followed up with the revealing of donors to political parties in order to end the secrecy around financial contributions.

“It was overwhelmingly in the public interest to release these names and any associated details. However, it should have been done in December, along with Arlene Foster stepping down, and perhaps the recent election could have been avoided.

“It is disappointing this list was published at the end of a week just before the long St Patrick’s Day weekend, perhaps in an attempt to avoid in-depth scrutiny of it. It would be disappointing to think this was a way to bury bad news.

“It is also vital the Secretary of State immediately implements the legislation revealing donors to local political parties, so we can once and for all end the secrecy around financial contributions and ensure other parties follow Alliance’s lead in being open and accountable to the public.”

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