New Standing Orders in Hain’s hands

Waiting for an online report, or transcript to appear, but Radio Ulster News at 5pm was reporting that the still-transition assembly failed to agree the new Ministerial Code Standing Orders – on a cross-community vote Sinn Féin voted against the proposed Standing Orders, reportedly because of a clause allowing for the removal from office of ministers on the recommendation of the IMC. Which apparently leaves the decision on the new Ministerial Code Standing Orders in the gift of our Secretary of State for Wales etc.. assuming he has time. Expect more buying and selling ahead. Updated Should have waited to check the detail. Apparently it’s the Standing Orders which are now in the gift of the Secretary of State – Thanks Sera. Adds The BBC’s Gareth Gordon reports on the debateFrom Gareth Gordon’s report

But if this was a test of whether Sinn Fein and the DUP can work together they seemed to passed it up until the point in the discussion of standing orders when Sinn Fein made it clear they could not support rules which refer to the possible exclusion of ministers.

However, the St Andrews Agreement Act enables the secretary of state to impose the rules anyway and the issue has now been referred to him.

Actually Peter Hain’s name was rarely mentioned. But with D-Day looming he was the ghost in the room.

Short of him flinging open the doors and shouting “it’s devolution or dissolution” for the umpteenth time he could hardly have played more of a part.

For the majority of the MLAs present there is little that can be done to influence that situation.

Last week they met to sign the roll – next week they hope they still have a role.