“I will defend to the end the Northern Ireland Office appointments procedure”

According to this PA report, nothing yet on the NIO site, the Secretary of State for Wales and Northern Ireland, Peter Hain, on behalf of the NIO [and presumably tax-payers everywhere? – Ed], is to appeal against the High Court ruling that the procedure used in his appointment of Don MacKay and David Burrows to the Parades Commission was unlawful. Updated below Final update below againFrom the PA report

Mr Hain said today: “I will defend to the end the Northern Ireland Office appointments procedure. It is impartial, subjective objective and follows all the rules.

“That is the reason why I will be announcing shortly that we will be appealing the judgment.”

He said the judgment had upheld all the major issue and practices involved in the appointments.

That would be this High Court judgement

Update The PA report has been edited since I first noted it, to change the quote from the Secretary of State to –

“I will defend to the end the Northern Ireland Office appointments procedure. It is impartial, objective and follows all the rules.”[added emphasis]

…which would be more appropriate in the circumstances.. I expect the BBC will edit their report accordingly too

Final update And they [BBC] have now done so..

  • seabhac siulach

    “It is impartial, subjective and follows all the rules.”

    Impartial? Subjective?
    “The decision of the panel members that no perceived conflict of interest issues arose in relation to these applications is in my view inexplicable.”

    Follows all the rules?
    Faked references, not followed up on, and the little matter of the judgement stating that;
    “It causes one to doubt whether the panel members properly understood the nature of the task on which they were engaged.”

    “He said the judgment had upheld all the major issue and practices involved in the appointments.”

    So it’s just the ‘little’ issue then of the appointments being unlawful that is causing all the problems…as in (quote from the judgement);
    “I have, however, found that the process was unlawful in that the requirement of balance was not considered during the appointment process in connection with his appointment.”

    I would say that, Mr Hain, being in a hole should stop digging…

    But, perhaps there is some other reason to force orangemen onto the parades commission, perhaps related to the wider political agenda? Is there some political bargaining going on here?
    Why is Hain persisting (or why did he begin) with
    the idea of forcing orangemen onto a board which is supposed to be impartial? It makes no sense.

  • kensei

    Even if the decision is somehow overturned, the Parades Commission as is is now fatally compromised.

    This is just another waste of taxpayers cash.

  • David Michael

    A classic display of stubborn I-was-rightism. Hain can’t admit his mistake and will go to any lengths to prove to us that his ridiculout decision was the right one. In such ways does the small, immature man betray his smallness and lack of maturity.

  • If local cllrs on the mainland lose a court action, in their corporate capacity, then instruct their council officers to appeal, if they lose again, those cllrs can, theoretically, be surcharged ie be made personally liable for the waste of public money entailed by carrying on with the legal action. It’s a great pity the same thing can’t be done with Hain.

  • Let’s hope “the end” is his resignation. This debacle is typical of the roughshod British maladministration which has dogged this island in various forms for a very long time.

  • I demand that standards in public life be harmonised with those in the Republic at once.

  • Overhere

    I think he should be sent to South African to help his friends in the ANC to sort out the mess the new SA is becoming. Wait…….no……. he would only make things worse than they already are. Is there anywhere we can send him what about Iraq after all he cannot cause much more trouble there than is there already.

  • D’Holbach

    “It is impartial, subjective and follows all the rules.”

    Pete, according to the PA report he said it was objective. But then he would say that wouldn’t he?

  • Pete Baker


    It originally read ‘subjective’ but I’m guessing he either meant objective, or was misquoted – hence the change[which I’ll note in the post].

    Although the BBC are still quoting Hain as having said subjective.

    The problem with accuracy in this is caused, of course, by the absence of a statement at the NIO website..