DUP critics have accused the party of trying to suppress debate over their opposition to a power-sharing deal. PA reports that the group said it had stressed in recent communications to the DUP there must be a fundamental shift away from the present policy adopted by the party and back to the DUP’s 2005 election manifesto. The group stated:
“The Voice for Democracy Umbrella Group has also been disappointed with the aggressively public manner by which the DUP has attempted to stifle any resistance to their proposed minimal acceptance conditions for entering government with Sinn Fein/IRA.
“We have over the past few weeks made every attempt possible to engage quietly with DUP representatives at MP, MLA and councillor levels to highlight the deep concerns and confusion, created deliberately or by accident, by the party since the St Andrews negotiations but to no avail.
“Instead the responses have been, and no doubt will continue to be (as with their predecessors in the UUP), to threaten `do you want Sinn Fein/IRA to be the largest party? Do you want Plan B?` etc.
“Such responses to Christian people, people with integrity, intelligence and intellect, people from all walks of life, all of whom who put their trust and confidence in the DUP at the 2005 election will not be accepted nor will they to be used as `fodder` for the advancement of the position, power or financial gains of the few.”