Lord Rooker walks the plank.. or was he pushed?

When Secretary of State for Wales and Northern Ireland Peter Hain announced the NIO ministerial portfolios yesterday he was adamant that Lord Rooker was an integral member of the crew – “I have asked Jeff Rooker to take personal charge of the whole programme of radical reform following the Review of Public Administration, from local government rates to the introduction of water charges.” Today, in a completely unexpected move, it’s been announced that Lord Rooker is, in effect, leaving the NIO [despite the official spin – Ed] and joining the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in Whitehall [he’s still Spokesman on NI in the Lords – Ed] The new crew member is Inverclyde MP David Cairns and the ministerial portfolios have been redistributed.The new ministerial porfolios are as follows, according to the NIO, and assuming there isn’t another change –

David Hanson MP – Political Development, Criminal Justice, Department for Social Development (DSD), Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM) and Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP). The Minister will retain responsibility for the Maze development. The Minister will have special responsibility for victims.

Maria Eagle MP – Department for Employment and Learning (DEL), Department of Education (DE), Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment (DETI) and Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) and Minister for Children.

Paul Goggins MP – Security, Policing, Prisons and Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS)

David Cairns MP – Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), Department for Regional Development (DRD), Department of the Environment (DoE).

Lord Rooker – Northern Ireland Business in the House of Lords.

Also worth noting is this from the NIO statement –

Mr Cairns will retain his Ministerial responsibilities in the Scotland Office.[he was appointed as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland in 2005]

  • Crataegus

    Rooker did not impress me and I hope his replacement does, but would rather be rid of them all. Local politics to further local interests.

  • heck

    another english MP, who voted to start an illegal war and kill over 100000 iraqi civilians, set over to lecture the micks about “violence” and “criminality”.

    even the DUP would be better than this crowd.

  • Rubicon

    Ah – ’tis nothing more than a Brit attempt to bring Direct Rule in to disrepute! ‘T’wont work! Never! Never!

  • heck

    I guess I should have said scottish not english

  • Intelligence Insider

    heck,
    I can think of at least 2 M.P.’s from here who took part in an illegal war and played their part in killing civilians. I hope you joing me in denouncing them?

  • heck

    II

    Do you mean UDR major ken mcguiness who was an MP, and wee jeffery Donaldson who was also in the UDR?

    given they are ulstermen I will leave their denouncing to you.

    I will save mine for the british MP’s who supported the iraqi war and then lecture the micks about violence and criminality.

  • bertie

    Good point II!

    Back on the thread :-

    “Minister will have special responsibility for victims.”

    I wonder what this will ne all about. He will presumably be the person who will try and push through OTR mark II, so maybe his special responsibility will be to mess with their heads again!

  • Snuff Box

    Not sad to see Rooker go at all. He seemingly was at the head of the legilation to ban developmentment of houses in the country. Not that I wholly disagree with the aim of the legislation. However the manner which he presided over the decision and his condescending attitude to people here were offensive. Unionist and Nationalist should be glad of his departure.

  • Snuff Box

    Can we have a reason as to why the Ballymena threads were ended. I realise that it is probably a legal minefield. I suspect that the abandonment was probably due to a request from a higher power? I would’nt want anyone to compromise their integrity but is an explanatioin too much to answer. The threads have not been removed so they factual at least….

  • English

    David Cairns is an ex-Priest, and the law had to be changed to accomodate him. Previously ex-Priests were not allowed to become MP’s before Mr Cairns. Another good choice for Northern Ireland direct rule me thinks!

  • Pete Baker

    Specifically, english, the House of Commons (Removal of Clergy Disqualification) Act 2001

    Text of Act here.. technically it removes the disqualification of ordained ministers [clergy] from being a MP.. some Church of England bishops [Lords Spiritual] remain disqualified.

    Snuff

    I don’t know for certain.. but the recent tendency for threads to descend into slanging matches and/or be deliberately diverted, combined with time-constraints on moderators, probably had something to do with it.

  • Snuff Box

    I understand that it wouldn’t have been discontinued without good reason. However I feel to continue it in some fashion.

    Concerning the young lad in question one of his friends seems to have setup a profile for him. It’s really quite touching and many of his friends have left comments. Many for both side of the sectarian divide.

    http://www.bebo.com/Profile.jsp?MemberId=544885714

  • steve48

    I’ve been following the comments on bebo since I first seen it refered to on slugger and it is the most moving thing i have seen in a very long time. While it sometimes is hard to read in txt tlk it is a pure outpouring from young people who recognise that what has happened is wrong. I hope that in respecting mickey bo the young people of Ballymena and further afield can decide that their future will not be about hatred but about all the other sentiments they have so ably expressed through the medium they have made their own.

  • Scipio

    Maybe I’m getting jaundiced, but when Slugger started (and in fact until fairly recently) we seemed to get reasoned argument, with a few nutters thrown in for comedy.

    Now it seems we have descended into too much abuse and lots on RC/P slagging matches that would be more in keeping with the Stephen Nolan Show.

  • Pete Baker

    Snuff and Steve48.. and everyone else.

    There are other threads on that topic. I’d appreciate it if comments on this thread kept to this topic.

  • Garcia! He drink sangria!

    Sorry Pete Baker but I have to agree with Snuff Box and Steve48. I think this should get some mention on Slugger, even if off-topic (the treats related are closed) or sub judice or whatever, afterall the wee online scumbags gloating about this poor lad’s demise have got national press attention now.

    The kids clearly aren’t alright, but they’re not all bad.

  • Garcia! He drink sangria!

    For ‘treats’ read ‘threads’…..

  • Pete Baker

    No they’re not, Garcia..

    See here.. and the more recent thread here

    Otherwise I’ll have to start trimming on this thread.. and I don’t want to have to do that.

  • Garcia! He drink sangria!

    My sincere apologies Pete, didnt realise the latter thread was still open. You can put your scissors away…. 🙂

  • elfinto

    Never heard of him. Don’t suppose I ever will again. Never heard of the other guy either.

    I have just been inspired to put on ‘What Difference Does It Make’ by The Smiths. How Tragic!

  • Ciaran Irvine

    Hang on a minute – if clergy were banned from the House of Commons until 2001, what was Paisley doing in there for all these years?

  • Garcia! He drink sangria!

    elfinto – stay on topic please….sheesh!

    Lord Rooker – legend – “if you do not support the police and the rule of law, you are actually supporting criminals, rapists, muggers, thieves and embezzlers—that is the implication”

    For one, i’ll miss the Noble Lord….

  • Garcia! He drink sangria!

    Non-established church innit Ciaran.

  • Pete Baker

    I have no idea, Ciaran.. feel free to examine the Disqualification Act for any clues

  • iluvni

    Arrogant Hanson still in charge of the Maze farce though.
    What a pity.
    Hoped a change of personnel might have enabled the Government to see sense and ditch the crazy scheme.

  • bob Wilson

    Is Rooker removal because:
    a. Blair appointed another peer to two jobs by mistake – needed someone else and only Rooker was available. or
    b. NIO knows John Lewis development is going to be thrown out by courts and make Rooker look a prat (He said it was a ‘no brainer’ if I recall correctly after 2 hours in the minister seat)

    Just a thought

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