“further work to do..”

UTV’s Ken Reid is reporting that there will be no nominations on Monday. Instead, he says, the legislation that the Irish Times’ Frank Millar reported on will be brought forward on Monday. It’s still in the realms of speculation, mind, and the earlier speculation was of nominations followed by those transitional arrangements. Interestingly the DUP’s Peter Robinson is reported as saying that over 90% of the executive had passed the resolution.. which is a very familiar figure. It’s not what Peter Hain wanted to hear of course.. Adds BBC reports the resolution contains a definite date.. May..

“We have as a result of the resolution further work to do and that is the reason why we are not releasing it at this stage,” he said.

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  • Cahal

    So yet another deadline passes in what must be the longest post-conflict normalization process of all time.

    On local radio here one of the headlines was “northern Irelands protestant leaders refuse to share power with catholics”.

    This is the type of international press they are recieving.

  • against the head

    u must be listening to radio republican sein fein?

  • Yokel

    Oh for feck sake would someone make up their mind? I have a bet riding on this.

    Cahal, they don’t care if they did get such publicity like that and they are right not to give a shit. What some journo reports in California is worth absolutely diddley squat. End of.

  • DUP want Six more weeks, til what?

    Tony Blair decides to stay a little longer and fight the next election

    My son asks for more time on his new PS3/HD ready flat screen, I give him six more hours.

    Telling the truth has become positively revolutionary and something not to be recomended.

  • observer

    the DUPs once again burst hain and SFs bubble!!! well done lads

  • kensei

    Yeah, fantastic logic there, Observer, I’m sure that this makes you feel like a big man, but 1. you are hurting yourselves as much as anyone else 2. there is a mutual veto and SF could play these fucking stupid games if they so desired.

    Collapse it. Stop paying them money, and move to Plan B.

  • Cahal

    Actually yokel, if I was a Californian business man looking to invest in Ireland (which I’m not), I probably wouldn’t be rushing to Belfast any time soon.

    Whatever you may think, international ‘perception’ of NI is still important in terms of inward investment. You can’t go begging to London forever.

    “u must be listening to radio republican sein fein? ”

    It did make me laugh a bit. But, let’s be honest, it’s not too far from the truth.

  • Yokel

    DFont call it yet Observer. Tony still has buy it.

    It looks like everyone has estimated on an extension as likely but will Tony dig his heels in?

    Be interesting to see how the Toroies take this on at Westminster if he does. The bipartisan approach is shaky as it is.

    I’m alsp just wondering if Gordons apparently crap package wont be replaced by a new one..by PM elect Brown..just after Tony announces he’s stepping down….

  • observer

    Sinn Fein and Peter Hain will just have to wait til were ready.

    Weve waited nearly 40 for the provos to end their murderous campaign we can wait another few months

  • Yokel

    There isnt a Plan B, its called doing the same as when the Assembly was dissolved.

  • Yokel

    I don’t go begging to anyone and you shopuld note every party in this process has gone begging to London and has for years.

    I’ve made it clear before there shouldnt be any special money available.

  • Cato

    There’s no way Blair will dig his heels in. If he was brokering a deal between the Israelis and the Palestinians and the Israelis asked for six more weeks to hand over the West Bank, do you think he would dig his heels in then?

  • SuperSoupy


    If 6 weeks is all the DUP and you need to provide the fig leaf of cover for endorsing SF in government with a co-equal DFM and 3 ministries then it is a tiny price.

    It’s a laughable price, a childish and pointless one but in the end it is just delaying the inevitable and of limited consequence.

    I hope you get your 6 weeks and look forward to the DUP working with SF on a daily basis once its up.

  • The Elk

    Right boys, shows over. Pull the table away. It’s time they fell to the ground. Roll on joint sovereignty.

    At least then we might have a chance of a proper economic solution in the form of bringing in the euro and harmonising fiscal and monetary policy with the south?

  • Yokel

    Eating Elk horns more like..clearly hallucnegenic.

  • Six weeks seems a strange number?

    Something blowing in the wind?

    DUP got a tip about certain revelations being made public that will delay things further?

    A Republican scandal to confuse issues further?

    Six weeks a strange number indeed.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    This is clearly an attempted humiliation of Hain. He could not have been more clearer about yet another deadline.

    One could argue that Hain was leaving himself a hostage to fortune given the internal strife within the DUP and given the inherent sectarianism that runs right throughout that organisation.

    However, threaten to close up shop he did, it is for him to climb down at this juncture, no one else.

  • Yokel

    Depends Art on whether this six weeks, May is just mysteriously after Tony announces that he stands down or just before.

    The widespread expectation is that he will announce he is going just after the expected pasting for Labour in the May elections.

    Either going just before then represents a carrot to Tony of a nice way fopr him to go out..or a kick in the bollocks for him. I suspect its the former and the DUP have their timing spot on if Tony sees it as a carrot…

    Maybe that helps clarify.

  • SuperSoupy

    6 weeks of extra media coverage would probably suit SF in the run up to the Dail election.

  • Pat Mc Larnon


    I agree especially as even Independent media will have difficulty attributing the blame to anyone but the DUPers.

  • Henry94

    It does seem like an incredibly childish position. A date defying stunt as Mark Durkan predicted.

    To Sinn Fein six weeks is nothing. It will free up MLAs to help with the election in the south which is seven weeks away and the historic pictures from the north will come in the last week of the campaign. Not too bad.

    The only question I can see is will Tony Blair tolerate this “slap of the begging bowl”.

  • Ian

    “the earlier speculation was of nominations followed by those transitional arrangements.”

    If the government were to sell such a fudge as ostensibly allowing for individual ministers to get to grips with their briefs before the Executive eventually meets, then surely the posts would have to be filled before the 6 week “re-suspension”, otherwise how would each Minister know what homework they’d been set?

  • Yokel


    SF want the big cash bonus as well, they have minstries to run as well and want a money cushion to play with. They are just leaving the DUP to do most of the moaning.


    If that scenario occurred. It would be same way any minster anywhere else has to deal with it after a reshuffle, they get a big box of papers, some civil servants to brief them and get told to get on with it

  • Crusty Burke

    Do you know what really makes my blood boil? It’s when Paisley and other Unionist politicians claim they are speaking for the “People of Ulster” when they take their unilateral actions.

    I am from Donegal and I can assure “Dr.” Paisley that I one person of Ulster that he does NOT speak for.

    Roll on Joint Sovereignity!

  • Ian


    I’m just picking a hole in the argument that has been mooted that British government might spare Hain’s blushes by presenting it as “bedding down” the Executive. If posts aren’t filled on Monday then each prospective minister will have to brush up on all ten areas of government duriing the six weeks, since they won’t know which ministry they’ll be allocated at the end.

  • Mick Fealty


    As the AP article makes clear, SF were first out with the mendicants’ cup. This is clearly being spun as the DUP kicking the toys out of the pram, which, so far as I can see does not sit quite so snuggly with the facts as some of our commenters (and the British government) would have us believe.

    The truth is that the deal as it stands does not satisfy any of the preconditions that Sinn Fein expects to be fulfilled. The pro-PSNI statements from Adams and Kelly of recent times are still considerably ahead of where the party is, particularly the party in Fermanagh.

    As Pete has carefully documented (often in the teeth of some limited but unreasonable protest here), the party is only likely to settle for a deal when devolution of policing and justice has been agreed. Despite some shameless spinning here and in the mainstream press, that was and remains completely outside the terms agreed by the Sinn Fein leadership at St Andrews.

    As one SF friend has put it, in a leadership-led organisation ‘give them an inch and they’ll take a mile’.

  • German-American

    Mick, while I agree that media spin and public perception are at variance with the realities pointed out by yourself and (especially) Pete Baker, I think that the spin and the perception are not totally wrong in seeing Sinn Féin as being further down the road than the DUP.

    As I’ve previously commented, I think concessions of principle are very important in terms of swaying both opponents and interested third parties (e.g, the British and Irish governments). In SF’s case people can and do look past the fact that its concession on the principle of policing is conditional on future events, even future events outside the scope of the St Andrews agreement, given that the conditions are relatively easy to imagine being fulfilled. (For example, SF’s current position is a far cry from the position that recognition of the police and justice system should be a consequence of the unification of Ireland and not a prelude to it.) Were it otherwise I doubt SF would have taken the flak it did from rejectionist republicans and others, and I think SF is (rightly) getting credit for taking that flak prior to the election.

    Many people (including myself) think that the DUP has not (yet) made any equivalent concessions of principle, but rather (to make a mixed metaphor) is simultaneously dragging its feet and playing its cards overly close to the vest, in a manner reminiscent of SF and the IRA during the Trimble era. The DUP is asking quite a bit of SF and the British government, but what is it asking of its own party members and supporters? Not much it seems to me, at least on the evidence of the DUP election manifesto, other than to scale back the goal from smashing Sinn Féin to merely annoying it.

    In order to reverse the “tossing toys out of pram” perception I think the DUP needs to make its own equivalent concession of principle, and I think a suitable one would be to reverse its refusal to engage in direct negotiations with SF. To be effective such a concession, like SF’s, could even be conditional on easily-imagined future events, like those outlined in some of the post-March 26 scenarios being floated. (For example, talks with SF could be dependent on some form of interim nominations and taking of ministerial oaths.) Beyond the matter of principle, I presume the DUP’s refusal to talk directly to SF has been in large part due to fears that it would be seen as selling out the union behind closed doors. While some would no doubt still make that charge, the election showed that no one has the power to make it stick, and thus I think the way is clear for the DUP to engage in direct negotiations with SF, for whatever benefits they might bring.

  • German-American

    In my comments above, for “concessions of principle” read “concessions on matters of principle”. (Writing late at night has its downsides.)

  • Henry94


    If you have any information about any wrongdoing in Fermanagh then spit it out or take it to the police. Sluggers shabby insinuations are based on nothing other than wishful thinking.

    There is no evidence of wrongdoing, no claim from the PSNI of wrongdoing, no investigation and nothing at all to implicate Sinn Fein or any of its members in anything at all.

    The meaning of the Sinn Fein Ard Fheis motion was perfectly clear in advance and I explained it here at the time.If yourself and Pete want to stick to you own explanation even as events unfold to contradict you and reduce you to drawing meaningless distinctions between the Sinn Fein leadership and the Sinn Fein leaders then off with you.

    Events will continue to bewilder you.

    By the way, please explain the consistency of an editorial line that won’t associate the statements of the Sinn Fein President with Sinn Fein policing policy but is willing to associate with it any real, imagined or claimed event that may or may not have happened involving people who have no association with Sinn Fein and are opposed to Sinn Fein on policing.