Lo: Assembly has failed to resolve flags on Council headquarters

Alliance Environment spokesperson, Anna Lo MLA, has said the decision of the DUP, Sinn Fein and SDLP to veto the Alliance amendment to the Local Government Bill for all Council headquarters to fly the Union Flag on designated days, has prevented the Assembly from finding a solution to this issue. A petition of concern was submitted on the Alliance amendment.

Anna Lo MLA said: “As legislators it is up to us to have mature and thoughtful discussions on contentious issues. It is up to us to find solutions. Submitting petitions of concerns prevents us from having a full and proper debate on this issue.

“The Alliance amendment would have created a standard policy in all Councils and taken the whole flags issue off the agenda for the new Councils, rather than each of them getting embroiled in a row about where, when and how to fly the Union Flag, distracting them from other more important issues.

“I am disappointed that the SDLP sought to veto the Alliance amendment. They have said they want to park the issue of flags. However, the only solution to end the debate about flags on Council buildings was the Alliance amendment.

“The question must be asked why the SDLP and Sinn Fein have changed their position after they supported designated days at Belfast Council. The DUP must also explain why they opposed the Alliance amendment after they supported this policy at Down Council.”


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