Stephen Farry stated: “This paper shows up the lack of leadership on the part of the UUP. Rather than a ‘can do’ party, the UUP are now intent on becoming the ‘can’t do’ party.
“Northern Ireland is now ready for the devolution of policing and justice. Rather than bringing more instability to the institutions, devolution itself will bring responsibility. It is up to the Treasury to provide a proper financial package to underwrite the current cost pressures, and it should then be up to local politicians to make the mature decisions regarding the best use of scarce resources. This is the essence of accountability.
“On finance in general, the UUP talk of a budgetary crisis, but made no proposals for any savings apart from the creation of yet another committee in the Assembly. The key question for the UUP is how they are going to explain their relationship with a possible future Conservative government intent on using swingeing spending cuts as the only mechanism for balancing the UK’s finances over the next decade.”