Tag Archives | Official Opposition

“a strategy which now views the very presence of devolved government in Northern Ireland as a bargaining chip with the Government and with the DUP.”

In the News Letter, Sam McBride provides an astute assessment of the “profound consequences” of Sinn Féin’s decision to resign Martin McGuinness from the Northern Ireland Executive Office.  From the News Letter article   Mr Adams now appears to envisage yet another round of ‘crisis talks’ in Belfast in attempt to extract further concessions from more…

NI Assembly logo

What would the Assembly look like if weighted majority voting had been introduced?

What would the Assembly look like if weighted majority voting had been introduced? With the present RHI scandal throwing up another problem with the system there have been some calls for a ‘public conversation’ on future reform. In the (original) Assembly & Executive Reform (Assembly Opposition) Bill John McCallister  brought forward cross-community support and the more…

screen-shot-2016-09-23-at-12-09-59

What will make for a good opposition at Stormont?

The two main government parties seem to have convinced a large chunk of the media that in order to be effective as an opposition, the UUP and the SDLP must form a government-in-waiting. It suits the DUP and Sinn Fein to paint it that way in order to cover their many splits on policy. Unfortunately, it more…

300px-StormontChamber

Arlene tells the BBC she will have final say over where parties sit…

Update on the idea of changing the seating arrangements to accommodate the Opposition, Arlene Foster has just said in an interview on Radio Ulster’s Evening Extra that she won the election and no one is moving their spot in the chamber. Though I think the last word on the actual positioning of Opposition and government will come down more…

UUP MLAs

After the election, the UUP have… gone into opposition…

Some will have noticed a pause in these rough post-election profiles of the main and mid-sized parties. The truth is I was struggling with what I could usefully say about the UUP. It wasn’t a great election for them, but they at least pulled back to 16 (from 13). On reflection in terms of content or more…

Martin McGuinness: “We now wait to see if SDLP will stand by the principles of the Good Friday Agreement or follow the UUP into opposition…”

The response of Sinn Féin’s new MLA for Foyle, Martin McGuinness, to being upstaged – at the moment of his re-appointment as Northern Ireland deputy First Minister – by the UUP leader Mike Nesbitt’s announcement that his party had unanimously agreed to go into official opposition in the NI Assembly, betrayed a confused, or forgetful, party more…