Alliance MLA Stephen Farry has responded following today’s keynote speech by UUP Leader Tom Elliott. Stephen Farry said that Tom Elliott did not answer the most important and immediate question as to whether or not the UUP are prepared to stay in government.
Stephen Farry MLA said: “The UUP are again playing catch-up on the need for radical institutional reform. Alliance has consistently advocated a voluntary coalition, with a pre-negotiated government programme, full collective responsibility and an opposition. The rules do not provide this at present and Alliance is committed to making government work.
“Tom Elliott, in his speech, has not set out how he would convince others about the need for this type of change.
“The fundamental and immediate question that was not addressed by the UUP is whether or not they are prepared to stay in government in the short-term, and respect the collective processes that exist. It is not sustainable for parties to be both in and out of government, especially if they are not prepared to accept the most important decisions, such as budgets, that go to the heart of any coherent government.”