Parades Commission to get extra powers

The Parades Commission is to get greater powers under new laws announced by Northern Ireland’s Security Minister Ian Pearson and will be in place for this year’s marching season.The move follows the Quigley review into parades and the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee’s investigation into the issue.

However, according to the BBC report, the review’s recommendation for two separate bodies to replace the commission, will not be implemented.

“The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee concluded that the Parades Commission remains the best hope for developing the peaceful resolution of disputes and I endorse that view,” said Mr Pearson.

The announcement has been welcomed by SDLP Policing Board member Alex Attwood and Sinn Fein’s Gerry Kelly but DUP MP Nigel Dodds claimed the new legislation was aimed at penalising parade supporters.

Ulster Unionist Assembly member David McNarry has also condemned the decision, calling it another “evil tool”. Steady on David.