Following through on McKay’s misconduct of Stormont’s Nama Inquiry is a test for the Opposition…

So let me add some rather more sceptical thoughts to Brian’s view that the sacking of Daithi McKay is in itself a positive. For a start, the speed with which Sinn Fein investigated, and then had North Antrim MLA self-dispatch contrasts with the lack of one when more senior careers were on the line.

I won’t detain readers with the plethora of conspiracy theories emerging around who leaked the material or indeed why, but Sinn Fein moved uncharacteristically quickly to punish one of their own, by taking the rather drastic step of having him step down as an MLA.

As Malachi O’Doherty notes, whilst such ruthlessness may be commendable in terms of the fairly low standards of Stormont (where, as alluded to yesterday) no one ever resigns for anything, ever, the casual way the party burns through younger talent is alarming.

Martin McGuinness might be personally appalled at the behaviour of McKay, if we are to believe he knew nothing about it. But he can not be anything but sorry to have lost him.

If the best service a member can give a party is to take the bullet for it, to absorb the full blame for a little mischief, then that is too high a price paid this time for too little gain.

What was the gain after all, but to enable a truculent loyalist, Jamie Bryson, to make allegations against the then First Minister Peter Robinson? This was hardly even a poke in the eye for Robinson.

Maybe those who planned the attack on him had higher hopes than that the whole thing would blow over and get lost in the welter of last year’s more interesting news. Maybe there was a threat of other disclosures implied in it. But it seems the party that has taken a real hit is Sinn Fein itself.

It does have a utility. Breaking in the silly season, McKay’s hasty dispatch may not be news by the time the political season comes around again. With Bryson now publicly threatening to do something similar to the DUP both government parties have an interest in not spinning this out.

More to the point, in bundling McKay out of the Assembly Sinn Fein have potentially blunted the capacity of Opposition parties to hold a proper inquiry into the misconduct of a serious, parliamentary inquiry.

As Colum Eastwood notes, “Sinn Fein don’t do lone wolves, they do scapegoats”. In the same statement, he posits five questions (now more problematic to ask now McKay’s Stormont desk is cleared):

1. What other witnesses did Sinn Féin MLA Daithí McKay & Sinn Féin adviser Thomas O’Hara coach prior to their appearance at NAMA inquiry?

2. Did the Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir receive any communication from either the Committee Chair Daithí McKay or Thomas O’Hara to ensure that Jamie Bryson’s evidence was heard in open session?

3. Was the current Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir prepped in advance of Jamie Bryson’s choreographed appearance at the Stormont Finance Committee?

4. Did Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir receive any communication from McKay or O’Hara with regard to the appearance of any other witnesses?

5. When was Joint First Minister Martin McGuinness made aware of these allegations and what precise steps did he take once he found out? How many members of Sinn Féin did he speak to?

Mike Nesbitt has called for a proper investigation

… it begs the question – was Daithi McKay on a solo run or was it a Sinn Fein operation sanctioned from the top? Certainly the long-standing culture within Sinn Fein is one of centralised control and not of solo runs.

“We also need to know if Martin McGuinness knew about this. Who else in Sinn Fein did and who gave it the go-ahead? And what does Martin McGuinness’s colleague Arlene Foster have to say about it?

“It certainly doesn’t say a lot for their working relationship or the prospect of the First Ministers’ working relationship, given that trust appears to be a very scarce commodity indeed.

But, as David noted on last night’s Evening Extra, this is a test for the Opposition….

As he also observes, what the Opposition wants is not necessarily what the opposition will get. But since it looks like elements of the DUP have also been playing footsie with Mr Bryson, so getting the framing right early could well pay dividends later.

 

, , ,

  • stewrogers

    so basically, Sinn Fein have been up to some dodgy political maneuvers (non-story, particularly in the context of Stormont), Robinson had some involvement in money deals (non-story) and Jamie Bryson is an orifice for hire masquerading as a loyalist but is really just desperate for the attention his mammy never gave him? Everyone is bored of this nonsense. Can we figure out who is going to fix the potholes on the road i live along?

  • chrisjones2

    …. If he didn’t know then surely he SHOULD have known. If not what the Hell are all those SPADs and Whips there for? And after engineering this little episode why was noone boasting about it. That is how political capital is minted and this was so richly comedic

  • Brian Walker

    Mick,
    Granted there may be a good reason for an inquiry. But into what exactly? Are we talking about a leaked confidential dossier here? Without substance, questions about who knew what and when did they know it melt like snow. Easy.to answer by simple denial beyond a timeline. What do you contradict them with? Where is the smoking pop gun? Is Mairitin O Muilleoir beating his wife? SF want to frame or expose Peter Robinson. so whom do they choose – someone of the calibre and reputation of Bryson?

    Goodness knows there’s enough to inquire into about Nama. But on this one? Where’s the beef? A juvenile stroke or what? Can you really, honestly see any of the big boys being involved without producing a scrap of evidence?
    I’m trying something new here, which is to give Sinn Fein the benefit of the doubt, rather than wallowing in l the same old same old. Bring me a fact rather than clouds of conspiracy theory and I’ll sit up. By the way what is Arlene saying? Have I missed her? Sammy? Oh yeah Sammy… The test for the opposition is to have the good judgement to sup this one with a long spoon.

  • Declan Doyle

    Well no actually. So far all we know is that McKay and a constituency worker were involved in the mess.

  • chrisjones2

    the problem is that your standards are so low…. the reality is that all of those should be big stories as, if true, they go to the heart of integrity in politics

  • Where is Bryson’s evidence? For years there have been rumours about corruption in the Robinsons. But no one has come forward with evidence on whose private house Castlereagh Borough contractors worked on, or what happened when he bought a bit of land blocking the entrance to a property development and then selling it on at the same price. All that emerged was Iris getting property developers to lend thousands of pounds to her toy boy. We get rumours and allegations, sending psychological messages without bothering what is true and what is not. It is almost as bad as the Leave campaign. If politics has changed in Northern Ireland, where is the evidence? Where is the protection for whistle blowers? Since power corrupts, shouldn’t the law be changed to assume that those in power are corrupt until they prove otherwise? It could be called the Bertie Ahern Assumption of Corruption Bill.

  • mickfealty

    The misleading of a senior committee by its own chair in a high profile inquiry? Why else take the drastic step of resigning? Simply put, it’s a serious corruption of due process.

    The “Person A” scenario was a rhetorical trick aimed at getting Bryson through to the end of a very long statement (http://data.niassembly.gov.uk/HansardXml/committee-14996.pdf), before dramatically naming Peter Robinson at the end, with minimal intervention by committee members.

    All apparently manufactured by the committee Chair.

    Now, it was all to the end of what Malachi rightly calls ‘a little mischief’ so I can see where your willingness to look upon the sacking positively has some merit.

    But there’s the more important question of the integrity of the institutions. SF are no longer new to this game, and I’m not sure what merit there is in assuming they need a bye ball on it.

    I don’t know what part if any Mairtin played in this. As it happens his questioning of Bryson took exactly the line that McKay told the witness it would, but that doesn’t put Mairtin in the frame per se.

    Flushing Daithi out of the system however now makes it far less likely he’s ever going to get asked about it. That’s why the Opposition need to be careful to frame these questions soberly and without exaggeration.

  • stewrogers

    Knowing is irrelevant. The low standards chrijones2 mentions allow me extrapolate as i have done because frankly which of these players can be trusted. NI politics do not hinge on facts.

  • Declan Doyle

    As usual we have those unsavoury individuals taking the next step in any saga regarding SF by dragging a victim out. Mairia having being dumped by FF, Labour and the newspaper her cousin works for (Sunday Independent), is now humiliated by intermittent public parading when an issue hits the headines. Slugger has become quite the expert at such grotesque victim scamming under the tutelage it apears of INM and FF. Moreover, anybody with an eye to serve on the Ard Comhairle would at the very least be required to support the peace process. Malachi lists off some young SF stars as if they have resigned, when in fact they are trojan workers at the heart of the party.

    Daithi is a great loss. Hopefully, temporarily. The burning analogy is more wishful thinking rather than hard reality. Coffin carrying colm Eastwood might try to remember Mr mckevitt before he gets on his opportunistic high horse. Eastwood is busy finishing off what is left of his party and as usual has nothing but gossip and slander to add to the debate, suitable for slugger but useless when it comes to the bigger picture.

    Nesbitt is probably more disappointed the issue can’t justify him collapsing the institutions as is the UUP norm, similar to the SDLP; desperate for attention, feeds on gossip.

    Apart from the issue itself, the swift actions of SF dealing with the two individuals have thrown the haters off course. Rather than following a FF tried and tested denial and obfuscation, the party have acted appropriately and dicisivley. Very rare on this Island but mature and responsible none the less.

    The sceptical approach is also quite helpful, the usual suspects will dance in delusion until eventually they realise that due process inconveniently applies to SF too. We need our sceptics, deluded or not, because we need to be able to identify the crazies in our midst who feel their prejudices trump justice. The 1960s are gone, some folk clearly need help coming to terms with that.

  • mickfealty

    I’d take a sceptic before a cynic every time Declan.

  • Declan Doyle

    I would prefer honesty over both.

  • mickfealty

    That goes without saying.

  • Jollyraj

    “Daithi is a great loss. Hopefully, temporarily.”

    Do you think they were wrong to sack him? And should sneak him back in later?

    I suppose if he were to come back then the questions listed above could then be properly investigated.

  • Dan

    Has the Finance Minister made any comment yet?

    Sharks are on the horizon….

  • Brian Walker

    A gross abuse of due process certainly. Perhaps that’s why he was fired from the Assembly? Not that there’s anything unusual in select committee members briefing ( coaching?) witnesses they want to appear. A committee is not a court of law with the chair as judge. It does depend quite a lot on whether they’re being briefed- or coached – to tell the truth or make stuff up. There is no reason whatever why McKay and his mate can’t be summoned not only by the Finance Committee but by the Standards and Privileges Committee. Indeed Sinn Fein should be pressed to require him to do that. Resignation from the Assembly makes little difference.

  • T.E.Lawrence

    Daithi is a great loss. Hopefully, temporarily ! When does the SF machine race him off to Dublin ? because he ain’t staying North with the SF Vote Base Burn he has just inflicted on himself but you never know ? Sheep have curious and unpredictable habits ?

  • Jollyraj

    It would certainly be interesting to hear his take on it and I think the voters – particularly the SF voters – will be demanding it.

  • Katyusha

    Can’t see how this would affect his voting base much. It’s more that SF want to shuffle him out of the way, and remove the open target from in front of those who want to sling mud at Daithí and the party. It can’t stick to him if he’s not there. Give it a few years, let the scandal blow over and it’ll be fine.

    Moving south would be a bad move. TD’s have come back from worse as if nothing ever happened, but the stigma around any sense of corruption in the south is too much for someone who is carrying baggage to overcome. Better to sit it out for a few years and return once this has left the news agenda.

  • T.E.Lawrence

    Up to the Hanna Brigade to put the squeeze on the Marty Boy and claim back lost ground in South Belfast !

  • T.E.Lawrence

    North Antrim is a different SF Vote Base to the Belfast/L’Derry Urban bases, just cannot see him getting away with it in such a traditional green vote base. Yeah you could be right about South so yes possibly a return in an urban constituency ?

  • Granni Trixie

    There you go again -instead of writing about the post using it to sling mud at someone who many admire for standing up with courage to SF. You’ve a brass neck to say Mairiah is humiliated when it is infact SF who is being humiliated through the leaking of these emails. .

  • Katyusha

    Maybe. I’m not familiar enough with North Antrim to really comment on it. If I was SF, I’d want to place him in a constituency where attempting to skewer the DUP is not seen as a bad thing.

    It’s difficult to identify an urban constituency that might work. It needs to be somewhere where SF are not under fire from PBP. PBP will nail this kind of dishonesty; they’re much more dangerous than the SDLP in this respect. West Belfast is out. North Belfast is also likely no-go because it plays to the characterisation of SF as career politicians. EB maybe?

    Either way, I can’t see this keeping Daithí out for good. Talent is rarther thin.on the ground in Stormont, and this scandal is relatively minor, especially considering the history and general conduct of some of our other MLA’s and MP’s. In three/four years time it will have lost all relevance.

  • mickfealty

    It’s the perpetual struggle for legitimacy Brian. Movement first, state nowhere. As I saw it’s now up to the Opposition to frame it well. They won’t get any help from anyone else!

  • Declan Doyle

    Where did I sling mud at Maria?

  • Declan Doyle

    You should know.

  • Brian Walker

    Mick, I disagree. Sinn Fein indeed wants to wrap up the damage and need not be treated too gently. But I see this as a clear assertion of legitimacy, unless clear evidence to the contrary emerges. If the opposition shout too loudly without evidence they risk making fools of themselves. If I were them, rather than adopt a scatter-gun approach I’d concentrate on a role for the committee on standards and privileges, using a bit of procedural nous.

  • Katyusha

    The misleading of a senior committee by its own chair in a high profile inquiry?

    All apparently manufactured by the committee Chair.

    I think we’ve long since jumped the shark of “no exaggeration”.
    It would be worth taking stock of how much of a storm in a teacup this is.

    McKay did not tell Bryson what to say. He did not suggest the allegations against Robinson. He did not abuse his position for any personal political or financial gain (if this is “corruption”, I dread to think what FF’s activities qualify as).
    There none of the hate speech or bigotry that some of our politicians revel in.
    Neither does it involve any of the paramilitary or security trappings that our scandals tend to revolve around, nor the allegations of sexual abuse that people like to throw around. We’ve been through a lot worse.

    All in all, it’s fairly mild stuff. All McKay has done is advise Bryson on how to play by the rules of the game, to allow him to get his statement out without someone trying to shut him down halfway through. You could be mischievous about it and say he was working with a political opponent to assist an investigation that was in the public interest. 😉

    By resigning, he’s been taken out of the line of fire and SF has taken what appears on paper to be appropriate and swift disciplinary action. I don’t think the UUP/SDLP have the political nous required to hit such a rapidly vanishing political target, given their inability to make hay from the clear multitude of failings of SF/DUP.

    The only people I see that can properly take advantage of this is PBP, and they’re better off keeping most of their powder dry until next election time.

  • Granni Trixie

    Who exactly are you meaning by “the opposition” – all the parties not in the Exeuctuve? Have these parties the same take on what is happening?

  • Gopher

    “unsavoury individuals taking the next step in any saga regarding SF by dragging a victim out” Then sticking Mairia in the next sentence, then adding “dumped by FF, Labour and the newspaper her cousin works for (Sunday Independent), is now humiliated by intermittent public parading when an issue hits the headines”

  • Gopher

    How long has Bryson’s relationship with SF been going on for?

  • OneNI

    The funniest thing is that the party that sees ‘securocrats’ at every turn used DM on Twitter to send messages!

  • Declan Doyle

    That’s not slinging mud at Mairia. The ‘unsavouries’ are those who abuse victims for party political gain, this mckay issue has no connection to Mairia at all yet she is dragged into anyway.

    She has been humiliated by parties and elements within the media who used her tragic story for wanton political mischief. And then turned their back on her when the water got hot over questions on her past republican links.

    If I slung mud at all, it was at everyone but Mairia, so pour urself a glass of prosecco and wind your neck in love.

  • mickfealty

    Why has he resigned then?

  • mickfealty

    You didn’t. I thought you were just cynically obfuscating on the matter in hand Declan by throwing in a bunch of unrelated facts.

  • Declan Doyle

    Reading much of your work; one wonders.

  • Declan Doyle

    Well u in your post linked to unrelated issues so I guessed it was fair enough then to include them in my own musings.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Well kitty can scratch…

  • Katyusha

    Because moving him out of the position protects both himself, and more importantly, the party from criticism? You said it yourself: McKay’s swift resignation and suspension has made it difficult for others to go on the attack.

    If he’d stayed in position, we’d be looking at spending the next three-to-six months discussing this issue. SF have now almost staved off such attacks before they’ve even begun. If this can be nipped in the bud now, its a good move. If other figures are implicated, then it might prove to be ineffective and premature. But we aren’t looking at Stormont grinding to a halt, just yet.

  • Declan Doyle

    It’s quite sad that we actually need claws. Nobody is interested in fairness anymore, it’s all about avoiding defeat at any price. We abhor bullying but politicians of all parties are dehumanised in through the media to the point where we are desensitised to the personal damage inflicted. So ya, kitty can indeed scratch.

  • Declan Doyle

    Lundy graffiti going up about bryson already. I simply can’t fathom why anyone would get wrapped up in bryson bed sheets.

  • Hugh Davison

    Four separate discussions on this and counting yet nobody can come up with anything other than what the actual players have said happened. It’s really Daily mail dog whistle stuff.

  • Hugh Davison

    maybe you could ask Bryson?

  • mickfealty

    It’s called ‘taking liberties’.

  • Jollyraj

    Stop press! Have you just criticized Sinn Fein, Declan???

  • sadie

    abc

  • T.E.Lawrence

    The whole saga would seem to support this Republican Mural don’t you think ?

  • sadie

    abc

  • Gopher

    No point asking SF but if Bryson’s achievements (sic) are anything to go by it is sometime. I just cant help but feel given that Nolan so thoroughly disassembled him why so many in the various blogging sites sought to try and put him back together in a credible form whilst common sense looked on incredulously.

  • Nevin

    Sadie, I’m sort of surprised that the Slugger heid yins seem to be oblivious to parading issues in North Antrim. I recollect Martin McGuinness stepping in to resolve a protest about ten years ago which involved Daithí’s predecessor, Philip McGuigan. I noted that Philip’s party blogging terminated at the time of a later parading issue and he was subsequently demoted.

  • sadie

    abc

  • Nevin

    Sadie, it doesn’t take much to inflame passions in NI politics. When you look at the timing, the said issues could easily have triggered the rapid cascade of events that followed a few days later.

    In light of my own research during the course of the past twenty-five years, I take all political claims with a large pinch of salt!

  • Granni Trixie

    I do not think the public regard this latest manifestation of dodgy dealings as ‘a storm in a teacup’, a feeling which the resignation reinforces.
    The story will linger in the public domain until the whole story is revealed (which it surely will).

  • mickfealty

    From what though?

  • mickfealty

    Ha!

  • mickfealty

    They don’t have to have precisely the same take, but the issues around this are clear enough.

  • sadie

    abc

  • T.E.Lawrence

    Exactly ! like I have posted earlier I see grounds for a full blooded assault on the Marty Boy and damaging that Rising SF Vote Base in South Belfast and putting a severe dent on the SF charge to be a competitor at the next Westminster Elections in this constituency !

  • SeaanUiNeill

    David, while I have no special knowledge regarding the claims against anyone who is or has been active in our political life, and would certainly be unwilling to support any allegations against anyone where firm evidence is not overwhelming, I have some experience (luckily not personal) of how the law may be invoked to stifle allegations which may not stand up to very exacting legal scrutiny, and may leave anyone making such claims open to a charge of defamation. This appears to have been the core method that Jimmy Saville and Cyril Smith used to suppress any knowledge of their sexual abuse activities reaching the general public during their lifetimes. It is profoundly difficult in the modern world to prove such things unless there is a solid paper trail of evidence.

  • As Brian says, this SF probably acted quickly to contain damage within what on the face of it seems to be a series of private exchanges that impacts on political integrity – but what would an ‘enquiry’ now achieve? An enquiry by who(m)? And with what sanction? MAMA has a lot of heat, but very little light in respect of what ‘accusations’ have been raised so far. This episode seems to be equally smoky.

    If there were an opposition it would surely also point to the fact that the present Chair has previously been challenged on ‘conflict of interest’ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/richard-pengelly-nama-summons-31592269.html and it should then make heavy references to none of this exactly raising confidence levels in respect of political integrity. ‘Being professional’ is unlikely to be top of a list of characteristics an opinion poll was ascribe to all but a very few of our politicians. Having a go at the other side does not make up for lack of policy, but putting together a coherent case for independence to buy time to get your policy game together does not harm.

    Mind you, on that policy thing….

  • mickfealty

    It’s called libel. And in NI it is a very exacting law.

  • mickfealty

    Can’t fault any of that TD. No policy, no politics. Real folks ain’t that totally stoopid.

  • Granni Trixie

    She had credible answers about her Republican background. And for my money her story was not exploited by the media Infact it was she who took control of its use. For goodness sake don’t pretend to be sympathetic to her we are not stupid.

  • Granni Trixie

    “Nobody is interested in fairness anymore” ..really? Well let me tell you for the record that Many people still aspire to a fair society for NI. What was civil rights all about if not that?

  • T.E.Lawrence

    SF gave up on East Belfast along time ago with the movement of Niall O’Donnghaile to the Senate. The Vote Base is just not there and never will be. At best it is a case of holding onto the Belfast Councillor from Titanic Ward ! How about Daithi for South Belfast ? Has all the ingrediants of a performance at the Belfast Opera House don’t you think ?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Indeed Mick, the defamation act is much stricter in NI than over the water as none of the reforms of the Defamation act of 2013 have been extended to NI, ensuring we have far fewer free speech protections. The department of finance’s review of the law of defamation, published on 16th July this year recommends that the new provisions should be “extended to or replicated within” NI.

    https://www.finance-ni.gov.uk/publications/review-law-defamation

    The continuing anomaly is already attracting “Libel Tourism” regarding publications, with a legal action by Scientology started in an attempt to undermine such freedom of speech as the 2013 act ensures for publications:

    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/scientology-leader-plans-to-use-northern-irelands-libel-laws-in-bid-to-ban-dads-book-34675807.html

  • Declan Doyle

    Anxiety is not a very pleasant feeling for anyone , and I am not quite sure what fair anxiety actually is. But hey, if it works for its grand.

  • Declan Doyle

    Catch a hold to yourself, now who is slinging the mud eh? It is impossible not to be sympathetic to Mairia in the context of her alleged horrific experiences at the hands of her uncle, but that does not translate into a permanent free pass. She was roundly criticised by refusing to answer questions about her Republican connections whilst a Senator. Public figures, regardless of what catipultes them onto the political stage are subject to criticism just like everyone else.

  • chrisjones2

    More News of the World …”Politician caught with Trousers Down / mugging pensioner ‘ – resigns

  • chrisjones2

    …he was then a non person…thats what happens in Dictatorships – sorry ‘thats what happens in a party with Iron Discipline’

  • chrisjones2

    only by accident /inattention

  • chrisjones2

    “they are trojan workers at the heart of the party”

    …but just had a wack of their pay cut by the leadership

    ” Eastwood might try to remember Mr mckevitt ”

    …when the truth hurts and you are on the ropes victim set and send out the trolls on slugger to attack your opponents – especially the victims or if they arent available the Stoops will do

    “due process inconveniently applies to SF too”#

    Presumably so long as we can rig the committee and stage manage / avoid any impertinent questions and our mates in the DUP will help us out because, although they hate us they hate Jamie more

    “The 1960s are gone,”

    … so are the 1970s, 80’s 90s and Noughties. So the movemnet cant gate away with the murder, fraud and smuggling that it used to. We are told that the IRA has also met its demise, apart from the hard core on the old Army Council around some of the leadership …a sort of pensioners group now focused on the political agenda and protecting their organised crime interests

  • chrisjones2

    “Maria ……is now humiliated by intermittent public parading”

    The usual victim denigration that SF have been doing for the last 10 eyars

  • chrisjones2

    “her tragic story” was created by the party you support who abused her when she was assaulted then abused her when she dared speak out using nasty little trolls to post comments in social media

  • chrisjones2

    Yep … deflection strategy

  • chrisjones2

    “Nobody is interested in fairness anymore, it’s all about avoiding defeat at any price. ”

    {Sound of the SF violin orchestra playing mournfully in the background as troops of SF Grannies (wearing shawls) gently weep as how their party is oppressed }

  • chrisjones2

    …and it is unformed because our politicians are desperate to keep it that way lest some of their own activities might be exposed

    Now isn’t this an area where a crusading young Justice Minister might make a name for herself and do great public good.

    No …come on …stop laughing

  • chrisjones2

    PS that was both cynical and sceptical

  • chrisjones2

    Agree completely and its up to the Assembly to deal with it ….but on the DUP side half will hate Robbo any way and have been glad to see him off and they will be all under whip to support their Government Partners (but not be seen to do so too hard)

  • chrisjones2

    Its all very odd…after the election Emma Little Pengelly seems to have become referred to as Emma Pengelly again

  • 05OCT68

    Hows it supposed to work, rock up to an inquiry tell them you have evidence of wrongdoing? Or present your evidence to be scrutinized before it’s presented? If it’s the latter no one on the committee should have been surprised. If Daithi went on a solo in terms of the committee why was there no objection from an all party committee when Jamie was called and gave his ” evidence”?

  • T.E.Lawrence

    We can’t have nasty names like “Little” in Westminster dear chap ! # South Belfast

  • kensei

    Do you have inside knowledge here? That is an an okay question to ask, but unless you have the evidence to suggest it was more than just working with the witness on the presentation, you get into the danger of insinuation if you just repeat it a lot.

    Which is also damaging to institutions.

  • mickfealty

    Ken,

    I made that distinction in Slugger’s first posting (http://goo.gl/J7biSh). Nothing wrong with the committee working directly with a witness. But this was a wee homer by the Chair with a member (or members) of his party.

    And there’s no insinuation either. It’s a explicit fact that the Chair of the Finance Committee worked directly with the witness to postpone the naming of ‘Person A’ until the end of the session.

    The former Chair is now a former MLA for good reason. No amount of post hoc obfuscation can obscure that.

  • Nevin

    Sadie, it seems I’m not the only one to view the parades controversy as a potential trigger for the NAMA ‘revelations’.

    Varying the focus can sometimes reveal alternative explanations for a particular sequence of events.

  • Granni Trixie

    Blame predictive text, sorry. It’s the new small talk, don’t Ye know..l

  • Kevin Breslin

    A test infers that this is somehow challenging position to be in. This is a gift to the opposition.