“I could not simply wipe the slate clean knowing what I know”

The UUP’s sole MP, Sylvia Hermon, is a member of the NI Affairs Committee whose report on Organised Crime was published today. She has spoken to the Press Association about how hearing the evidence over the past six months of, amongst other groups, the UVF’s involvement in crime here influenced her decision to criticise the Faustian Pact between the UUP and the PUP. [Has someone sent the report to Peter Hain? – Ed]From the PA report:

“But from the perspective of someone who also sits on this committee, we have been looking at considerable evidence over the past six months of UVF involvement in a range of crime.

“All of that has been swilling around over the past six months and I could not simply wipe the slate clean knowing what I know.

“The UVF we all know, is not on ceasefire, is a proscribed terrorist organisation that is not involved in decommissioning and is involved in crime.

“That is why I was most disappointed by Sir Reg Empey`s decision to go and ally the UUP with the PUP in the Assembly on May 15.”

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  • Nevin

    Pete, it looks like Sylvia is intent on keeping the pressure on Reg:

    [i]Lady Hermon (North Down, Ulster Unionist)

    Given the present security situation in Northern Ireland, will the Secretary of State kindly agree to meet Mr. Raymond McCord, whose son was brutally murdered by the Ulster Volunteer Force eight years ago and who is still awaiting truth, justice and closure in respect of his son’s murder? Is the right hon. Gentleman prepared to meet him?

  • Pete Baker

    Possibly, Nevin.

    Although that question dates from last week, 28th June, and, with the PUP presence on the Policing Board, is aimed at embarrassing Hain as much as Empey.

  • Keith M

    How can Hermon make a statement like this and remain in the UUP?

  • Pete Baker

    Good question, Keith.

    there’s another quote from Sylvia Hermon MP that has been added to the BBC report, at the earlier post on the report, since I posted this:

    “I do hope, I do encourage Sir Reg and my assembly colleagues, to read the evidence… and report in great detail – I think they would benefit greatly from a reading of this report.”