Tag Archives | OFMdFM

Kicking the [financial] can down the road, again.

According to the BBC’s Mark Devenport, The Treasury has been asked to supply Stormont with a one-off loan of between £100m and £150m to ease its budgetary crisis, the BBC understands. According to the reports, the proposal was discussed with the UK Treasury by the NI First Minister, the DUP leader Peter Robinson, and the more…

There Is No Alternative! (to Casement Park development plan)

A fairly desperate argument from lawyers for the Northern Ireland Planning Service in Belfast High Court today, during the judicial review of the planned £70million redevelopment of Casement Park in west Belfast.  As the BBC reports The judge heard that DCAL have contributed £62.5m of the £77m cost of rebuilding the stadium as part of a project involving more…

Labour Party: “Making no progress on welfare has financial implications. It is not a cost-free choice…”

As Mick mentioned, the repeated attempts to blame the fallout from the Northern Ireland Executive’s deadlock on Welfare Reform on “the right wing Tory/DUP austerity agenda“, or “the British Tory Government“, or, more frequently, “a cabinet of Tory millionaires“,  have been dealt a blow by clarification of the Labour Party’s position by the Shadow NI Secretary of more…

Lord Chief Justice Morgan: “Our system of government depends on mutual respect between the executive, the legislature and the judiciary…”

The BBC reports that, after waiting 8 months for a reply, Northern Ireland’s most senior judge, Lord Chief Justice Declan Morgan, has made public a letter of complaint he sent to the Northern Ireland First and deputy First Ministers about comments made by a NI Executive Minister in the Assembly.  From the published text of more…

“Run like a huckster’s shop” – Redux

[No change since June 2009, then? - Ed]  Have there been any consequences…?  A BBC report that the DUP and Sinn Féin have, belatedly, agreed the outcome of the semi-detached polit-bureau Northern Ireland Executive’s June budget monitoring round was met with understandable criticism from the other NI Executive parties. Justice Minister David Ford, who leads the Alliance Party, described more…

Martina Anderson MEP: “and if the British government lifts its ban on Executive access to the EIB…”

No update yet from Sinn Féin on the meeting they chose to trail a couple of days ago between three of their MEPs, led by the Derry Northern Ireland representative, Martina Anderson, and “the Vice-Chairman of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Jonathan Taylor”.  But let’s hope they were better briefed than the 15 July press release suggests, more…

OFMdFM “operating on a day-to-day basis, in the same way a chameleon changes its colour, reacting to its environment…”

Dr Cathy Gormley-Heenan on the View last night, description of the two old Crumlin Road lags currently in possession of the Scottish Baronial splendor that is Stormont Castle (that’s OFMdFM to you and me): “They are very reactive to the temperature, the environment, the circumstances in which they are operating on a day-to-day basis, in more…

“Now meetings seem almost routine and we have dispensed with the fig leaf…”

Like boiling a frog…  After the party’s opposition to her first truly historic official visit to Ireland, this week, on the third occasion of the Northern Ireland deputy First Minister, Sinn Fein’s forgetful Martin McGuinness, being presented to the UK Head of State, Queen Elizabeth II, the earlier pretence has finally been dropped.  As Liam Clarke notes more…

Martin McGuinness: “I mean I remember, I remember, I remember…”

Or not, as the case may be.  Faced with evidence to the contrary, the Northern Ireland deputy First Minister, Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness, has admitted that he was not, as he had claimed in an interview with RTÉ’s Marian Finucane, in Portlaoise prison when “Patrick Duffy was killed and his body secretly buried”.  As the more…

HBO’s Michael Lombardo: “Belfast is not the most cosmopolitan of cities to spend half of the year.”

With so much of some Northern Ireland Executive ministers‘ time and effort [and other people's money! - Ed] focused on exploiting the international success of HBO’s Game of Thrones to promote Northern Ireland overseas, it’s perhaps unfortunate, but refreshing, that HBO’s director of programming, Michael Lombardo, has given an honest answer to a straight question – as more…

Sinn Féin: “What happened was done with British cabinet approval…”

A few days ago on Eamonn Maillie’s blog, Brian Rowan gravely informed us that, rather than the wild paranoid ramblings of a party desperate to distract attention from their threat to “review” their support for policing if the Sinn Féin president, Gerry Adams, was charged as a result of the investigation into the abduction, murder more…

Matt Baggott: “Under the Patten architecture, to which all political parties have signed up…”

PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggott has rejected Sinn Fein’s claims of “political policing” in the arrest and questioning of party president Gerry Adams.  And in doing so he highlights an inconvenient truth for the Northern Ireland deputy First Minister.  From the BBC report In a statement on Tuesday, Mr Baggott said the accusation of a more…

“Something, Something, Something, Dark Side…” – redux

More sound and fury from Sinn Féin over the continuing, agreed, questioning of party president Gerry Adams, TD, about the abduction, murder and secret burial of Jean McConville in 1972.  This time the Northern Ireland deputy First Minister, Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness, is recycling a 2011 phrase from his party chairman, Declan Kearney.  And, apparently, he has super-sekrit more…

Gerry Adams: “I have no recollection of that whatsoever.”

A couple of points to note about the BBC report of the interview with former Provisional IRA member Peter Rogers.  From the BBC report An ex-IRA man has made new allegations about Gerry Adams, in which he raises questions about the Sinn Féin leader’s claim to have never been in the IRA. Peter Rogers has alleged that more…

“a claim on behalf of Mr Green against Sinn Féin has been registered with the Fair Employment Tribunal…”

When Sinn Fein’s political director at Stormont, Leo Green, failed to appear at the party’s Ard Fheis in February, both Mr Green, whilst confirming that he was no longer their northern political director, and the party were keen to play down suggestions of a dispute.  As Liam Clarke noted at the time Green said he had renewed his more…

“the electoral prospects of individuals are not strictly a relevant factor when weighing the public interest in the disclosure of information…”

Another week, another ruling by the Information Commissioner that the Northern Ireland First and deputy First Ministers acted against the public interest in refusing to disclose information in response to a FoI request.  The request, from the News Letter, was for disclosure of OFMDFM’s corporate risk register – a list of the issues “causing concern” more…

Belfast City Council: “what happened on Saturday evening is a clear breach of our terms and conditions of hire.”

The News Letter has an updated comment from the spokeswoman for Belfast City Council about the (Provisional) IRA commemoration at Whiterock Leisure Centre on Saturday night.  From the News Letter report Belfast City Council says a republican event in one of its leisure centres was clearly in breach of terms and conditions, after critics objected more…

OFMDFM: “open and transparent…” – redux

Via The Irish News.  As UUP leader Mike Nesbitt says, “We’re not North Korea…”  [Thankfully... - Ed]  ANYhoo…  The UUP leader has welcomed a recent (27 March) decision by the Information Commissioner (not yet online) that the Northern Ireland First and deputy First Ministers were wrong to refuse to release the results of market research, that more…

Cartoon – With friends like these

Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness, Brian John Spencer

  Who needs enemies? And of course it’s been said:  “I fear the real danger for Unionism lies not in what our opponents would seek to do to us but in what we do to ourselves.”