More resignations ahead of election

Interesting news from the BBC on the dissenting voices within both Sinn Féin and the DUP, and an interesting comparison of approaches.. not to mention timing. DUP councillor Davy Tweed has resigned from the party over the prospect of it going into government with Sinn Fein, but will stay on Ballymena Borough Council as an independent. Meanwhile Fermanagh Sinn Fein councillor Poilin Ui Cathain has stepped down from her seat on the Council citing “reservations regarding Sinn Fein’s support for the Police Service of Northern Ireland”, but has not resigned from the party.. even though that support has not actually been delivered yet.

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  • slug

    Mr Tweed’s approach, resigning from the party, but staying on as an independent, makes more sense than that of the SF councillor.

  • Pete Baker

    I had the same thought, slug.

    If she has reservations with the party why would she only resign from the Council?.. a negotiated settlement perhaps?

  • snake with eyes of garnett

    All the best Davy, and he will take a thousand votes with him. Mc Kay to top the pole?

  • Glen Taisie

    Mc Kay to top the pole?

    The only pole McKay tops is when he nails his posters over those of his opponents. Please see photos of Ballycastle Diamond on other internet sit

  • snake with eyes of garnet

    U have it in for the shinners GT. Bet u were in them once and just snip from the sides now. personality clash?

  • snake with eyes of garnet

    Mc Kay will top poll.

  • pia_lugum

    Davy Tweed is an even bigger man than I thought he was. He has put his concience above loyalty to the union-wrecker Paisley. Take 6 months out Davy before joining any other party. See who approaches or doesn’t approach you. You find out who your friends are that way!!

  • Patrique

    I would have been impressed if they had resigned over Water Charges, but no. Tweed resigns over talking to fenians, and the other one resigns over Garnaville Gaels, also known as the PSNI.
    How did they get on in the Sigerson this year?

    P.S Tweed will take a 1,000 votes with him? Are there really that many stupid people still about?

  • ulster voter

    Tweed should resign from the council and if hes that good stand again in the bye election and see were his support comes from

  • P.S Tweed will take a 1,000 votes with him? Are there really that many stupid people still about?

    If you’d seen him and his gang of knuckle-dragging, neanderthal, pals outside the Chapel in Harryville, you’d know there were at least that many stupid people about.

  • ballymena insider

    Tweed has had too many bangs on his head while playing rugby. He has no political standing on his own. He got a party vote. He and that other head-banger Wilkinson think they have some slout. Wilkinson is to resign shortly in an attempt to drag out their meaningless resignations. They think it will damage the DUP. In fact it will help the party. The DUP will be more electable without them.

  • What about Gillespie, Mills and the other DUPes?

  • mchinadog

    I support “Ballymena Insider” The DUP is bigger than Tweed, Wilkinson and the others nay sayers. Neither of these or any others who have yet to break the news are nothing without the DUP. When you stand in an election you are only the tool it is the Party that gets you elected, sometimes people have a small personal vote but in the end it is almost all a party vote. The DUP will not lose out in the end they will get those seats back and more when the time comes. Roll on the next Council elections and we will see where Tweed and the others go – the answer is nowhere.

  • TWH

    Very strange move from Cllr Poilin Ui Cathain (Pauline Drum). She must have been one of the most invisible councillors in recent years, even by Fermanagh standards.

    If she has “reservations” on policing then one would have expected that she would resign from the party, not the council. Clearly there is growing support for the “dissidents” in the area, but hardly close to taking a seat.

  • SuperSoupy

    As each DUP representative resigns they are declared as utterly useless by their party supporters/members.

    Why did you they put them forward in the first place?

    By contrast SF have thanked and wished those that left well with the notable exception of Davy Hyland who has been criticised as lazy and complacent by local members.

  • I bet not many other people around here remember Agnes McLeister of the Ulster Party, another former Ballymena DUP councillor.

    But that was different – she was protesting about the DUP sitting in the same room as the SDLP (ye shall not sup with them nor enter their habitation); the DUP-dissidents this time are complaining about Paisley taking Martin McGuinness as his Deputy First Minister.

  • Greenflag


    ‘ I bet not many other people around here remember Agnes McLeister of the Ulster Party, another former Ballymena DUP councillor.

    But that was different – she was protesting about the DUP sitting in the same room as the SDLP (ye shall not sup with them nor enter their habitation);

    Tweed le Dumb or Tweed le Dee . Some people never learn 🙁

    Wonder if oul Agnes still feels the same about the SDLP – not that it will matter in this or any NI election where the result is known in advance and the only question is how many boxes are filled with green ‘eejits’ as opposed to orange ‘eejits’.

  • I Wonder

    Hmmm..the principled Mr Tweed did stand for the Irish National Anthem in Lansdowne and apparently could stand the intimidation of the Hrryville Catholics.

    He seems to be able to stand a lot of things.

    Pity his principles dont seem to extend to resigning and fighting a by election…

  • Greenflag

    ‘He seems to be able to stand a lot of things.’

    A DUP politician named Tweed
    Was never much lacking in speed
    On the field
    While playing rugbee
    But he came to a stop
    And then blew his top
    When his Boss
    Invited SF
    To tea

  • Skintown Lad

    Poilin said her proudest moment as a councillor was when she “was involved” in a “motion calling for support for a United Ireland”.

    What a complete loser. This is her proudest moment! Is she some sort of simpleton or what? Saving hospitals? fighting for new schools? Attracting investment? Creating jobs? Don’t be silly! Far better to waste everyone’s time on petty point-scoring and pursuing ineffectual idealistic “declarations”.

    Fellow councillor Bernice Swift said “I am glad she is still going to be around – like the old slogan, she hasn’t gone away, you know.”

    More’s the pity.

  • graduate

    Cllr Tweed would appear to be on rather a large ego trip. Can’t hack it now that he’s not an Ireland rugby star, merely an ex so has to fuel his sizeable ego some other way. good for party noew that he has gone. Let’s see if the other nay-sayers in Ballymena have gutds to go or if they’ll leave the big one swinging in the wind. By the way, if they’re all so principled and such great councillors let’s see them stand down and fight for their seats again

  • challenger

    In defence of Davy Tweed, he HAS been cheated by his now former party. Like a lot of others in the DUP, in 2005, he waved the manifesto under the noses of an unsuspecting public and vehemently declared what the party Bosses had written therein:
    “Inclusive mandatory coalition with Sinn Fein under d’Hondt or any other system is out of the question”.
    So the people bought it. However, at St Andrews, the DUP then decided (so far, in principle) that they COULD accept a mandatory coalition, they COULD accept power sharing with Sinn Fein and they COULD accept d’Hondt. Only problem is that they “forgot” to mention this to the party members or the people who voted for them BECAUSE they had said they wouldnt do any of the above.

    I was in at a DUP office the day before the St Andrews Agreement was agreed. I asked if it was true that “something” was about to become a deal. The local councillor (also a Party Officer) told me definitely not. I pressed him and he waved his mobile at me, told me he was in “hourly contact” with those who were at St Andrews and there was absolutely no chance of any kind of deal. It was agreed the very next day.

    Point I’m making is that Sinn Fein changed policy very cautiosly and gradually over a 25 year period or so. That way, they took party and electorate with them. The DUP went from “Absolutely Not!” to “Ah yes, we will, thank you” in an evening. Result: some fracturing of the party with more to come when the sit down happens. Party members are inclined to feel cheated when the party changes policy overnight without consultation or any reference at all to the membership.

  • mchinadog

    Challenger alias Gary Blair or perhaps it is the other way around. Shut up or put up and join your friend Tweed and the others. The DUP is better of without you all, perhaps Bob McCartney will allow you to join his party for a week or two as you will not last much longer in his party than that, nobody does. The DUP does not want or need members like you why do you all not do the honest thing and resign your seats and fight them an independants and see how well you will do outside the Party after all it was the DUP that made you what you were that was DUP Councillors

  • mickhall

    These people who have resigned from the DUP have clearly touched a nerve, as those who have posted to condemn them have not touched on the reasons why these resignations took place.

    Pretty insightful I feel. I have no knowledge of the individuals mentioned personally, but surly principles and lines we are not prepared to cross are as important in politics as they are in daily life, and if not then surly they should me.

    Regards to all.

  • eyes of garnet

    I said it before and I will say it again, Tweed will take 1000 votes with him. Tweed did not get elected on the strength of the DUP. He got elected on the back of his anti-catholic crap at Harryville chapel. The DUP used Tweed and vice versa.

  • Red Mist


    Haha you are having a laugh surely. Anyone who has left SF over the past few years has been hammered behind their backs.

    Wishing people well in public (although I have yet to hear or see it) is one thing but its what goes on behind the scenes that is most telling.

    People being branded as lazy, ‘headers’, ‘influenced’, dead wood, etc, are just some of the most common themes to destroy someones character.

    So you are one of two thigns I think. Soemone who is being patently dishonest about this or someone who has VERY little insight into what is actually happening. The choice is yours.

  • mchinadog

    The DUP used Tweed and vice versa.

    Not sure you are right very few people in Northern Ireland vote for personalities, they vote for the party ticket. I am quite happy that he will not take 1000 votes with him. I see his friend Gary Blair has sent in his letter too, it is about time the DUP will be better of without him not sure he was ever a true DUP supporter anyway.

  • challenger

    mchinadog … It won’t be easy for me to resign from the Council as I am not a councillor. What I was getting at is that Davy Tweed got elected on the basis of the 2005 manifesto. That manifesto ruled out “inclusive mandatory coalition with Sinn Fein under d’Hondt or any other system”. Now that the DUP has broken that promise, Davy Tweed is freed from his allegiances to the party. I have been putting up every week in the N Antrim papers but no response from the DUP as yet. I agree that the DUP will be happier without the likes of Davy and me – the traditionalists are no longer required.

  • graduate

    if there’s so many DUP ballymena councillors lining up to quit the party then why have they left Tweed swinging in the wind? Local radio promised us one resignation a day from councillors but so far Mr tweed is the only one to jump- what’s the betting Gillespie and the rest are going to try and stay on? Not too easy being an independent as I suspect the rugby player is about to find out.
    By the way challenger, it’s not that the tradionalists are no longer required,it’s more that the dead wood needs thinned out and the thickos who haven’t read the StAA need to do so and inwardly digest. You lot seem more intent on listening to anti-DUP propaganda than talking to the Party- fairly typical of sad old men I suppose

  • mchinadog

    I know you are not Councillor G Blair, but you were a Party Member. I hope in sending your resignation into the Party leadership that you will now join with Tweed and a few others, and let the rest of us get on with the business in hand which is bringing Sinn Fein/IRA to a place where they have never been before, that is the table of democracy.


    I agree 100% with your views expressed. I have to say any resignation from a Party is something that no one is happy about, but the dead wood is better away because they are not doing the Unionist cause any good at all. By listening to McCartney and his ilk, what they are doing is helping the Shinners, did not Bob say it would be good if Sinn Fein were to be the largest party. I never thought I would have ever have heard a Unionist with either a large or small U coming out with a message like that. I am certain that when the Election is over and the DUP is the largest party these people will either crawl away or perhaps they will see the error of their ways but it should not be in the DUP fold.

  • Billy


    I am not in any way a fan or supporter of Bob McCartney. Whoever, I would rather judge people on what they actually said, not what SOMEONE ELSE reported that they said.

    Bob has already clarified that “comment” about him wanting Sinn Fein to be the largest party was a total spin of another point he made in an interview with Gerry Moriarty of the Irish Times.

    Frankly, I believe him. I could never see him wanting Sinn Fein to be the largest party. He is also a QC and a very clever man so I couldn’t see him making a foolish comment like this.

    I don’t think he’ll get elected anywhere but it doesn’t say much for the DUP that their main ammunition against him is something he didn’t actually say.

    Frankly, if I were a DUP supporter, I’d be emabrassed about yesterday’s Politics show. Jeffrey Donaldson is one of the DUP’s better public speakers but he got absolutleY slaughtered by Burnside and McCartney – no doubt about it.

    I guess the only good thing from a DUP perspective was that they didn’t put up Paisley junior – I can only imagine what the intellects of Burnside and McCartney would have done to him.

  • chopper

    Tweed is not the frist to leave the party and more will follow after the election once the DUP do the deal. Where will the hard core vote of the DUP go ?? Once the party of never never never now the party Yes Yes Yes

  • challenger

    Here we go with the old lie that Sinn Fein have been terrified into decommissioning by the DUP. Hard to credit that you would take the credit for it -or maybe not?

    Sinn Fein (current leadership) began a process of change in 1981 that has taken them to where they are today. Only twice did they lose members (1986 and 1997) in splits. The “purists” who left were impediments to the Adams leadership so no great loss to the party.

    So, Adams & Co took Republicanism along a gradual process of change over 25 years or so thus kept their party informed and conditioned to the ongoing changes. The DUP on the other hand, had a Pauline conversion to power sharing overnight! After 3 decades of referring to everyone who nodded the head to a Nationalist as a “Lundy”, and three months after telling Orangemen in Portrush that the DUP would share power with Sinn Fein “over our dead bodies”, the Doc and his “leadership” were bewitched and befuddled by Mainland and Free State politicians into doing a political sumersault!

    I’ll only be too happy to leave it to the rest of you to get down to business. I want no part in the comedy of errors that is DUP policy.

  • luogo interessante, soddisfare interessante, buon!