Watchdog to examine cost of advisers to non-ministers…

ALLIANCE leader David Ford has asked the watchdog Audit Office to look into the £1 million that has been spent by Executive parties on ministerial advisers during the period that there has been, errrr, no Executive (ie, since 2002) and no ministers to advise.

  • jerryp

    There are times when the political ” process ” in NI brings to mind a combination of two of my favourite tv programmes, Yes Minister and Father Ted.

  • I wonder would he be so keen for an investigation had his party been in receipt of enough votes to afford it a place in the Executive.

  • Reader

    El Matador: I wonder would he be so keen for an investigation had his party been in receipt of enough votes to afford it a place in the Executive.
    It would depend on what they had done with the power to spend other people’s money, wouldn’t it? It’s reasonable to apply the presumption of innocence to Alliance, since you would want it for your own party. Until the Audit Office report comes in, anyway.

  • Reader-

    But the point is that Alliance wouldn’t have had the power, just as the other parties didn’t, as the Assembly was out of action. Would Alliance have turned down the funding had they been offered it? By the way, the British Government provided the funding, so the parties were just doing what they were entitled to do, so it would be unfair to apportion blame, were any to exist, on them.

  • seamus deery

    Well one thing’s for sure, Mark Durkan will be keeping quiet. His former buddy and advisor Damien McAteer is one of the advisors named by the Telegraph last month as having being paid long after there was no minister or ministry. Still he made plenty of very very valuable business contacts during his period as advisor as well as getting big wages for a period when the job was non existent!!!!

  • Reader

    El Matador: By the way, the British Government provided the funding, so the parties were just doing what they were entitled to do, so it would be unfair to apportion blame, were any to exist, on them.
    I’m entitled to travel expenses from my employer, but that doesn’t prompt me to make unneccessary journeys. What are ‘ministerial advisors’ for, and who needs them when there’s no executive?

  • BeardyBoy

    Does anyone deduce, judging from the past behaviour of John Alderdice, if the money was there they would take it?

  • Sammy Morse

    I wonder would he be so keen for an investigation had his party been in receipt of enough votes to afford it a place in the Executive.

    Loose translation – the Stoops tore the arse out of the system, we know we tore the arse out of the system, so we’re going to fling a bit of mud about in the hope that no-one notices we’re covered in muck.