Mr O’Hara stated: “The British Government have pointedly stated that if the institutions of government are not up and running by 24th November 2006, then Direct Rule will be enforced and reforms will go ahead in this context. The Good Friday Agreement will continue to be implemented on a partnership between the British and Irish Republic governments.
“How suitably will Northern Ireland be governed by Direct Rule?
“If agreement has not been reached by November this year, the people of Northern Ireland will lose their best chance to have their say over the tap tax, rates reform, health matters and academic selection. All of these are matters which affect each and every member of society living in Northern Ireland.
“Now is the time for the dinosaurs of the two major parties to either reach agreement, or move aside and allow parties with progressive policies to move the process forward.
“As the countdown to possible long-term Westminster rule looms large, the Alliance Party wants an agreement to be reached as soon as possible so that we can get on with the proper governance of Northern Ireland.”