Last lap in Victims Commissioner appointment

The Irish News (subs reqd) is reporting today that there are 2 people in the final contest for the post of permanent Victims Commissioner. Mike Nesbitt is a former UTV news anchor who left the station early last year in what was described as a surprising move at the time. The other contender is Dr Marie Breen Smith, reader in International politics at the University of Wales. Marie was the co-author of the COTTS report. She is also the former Director of the Institute of Conflict Research in Belfast.

According to the Irish News Report, the final decision on the post will have to be made by cross party ratification. I was surprised that the IN carried the story as ‘Newsman favourite for Victim’s Job’. I am not familiar with Mike Nesbitt’s work or publications on Victims issues, an essential criterion for the post. I am sure if anyone has information on it, they will share it with the class. Marie Smith on the other hand has a vast body of work on victims issues, and sounds like a good candidate for the post.

  • wild turkey

    Ms F ( or anyone else for that matter)

    Some background please

    1.Given restoration of devolved govt, is the appointment in the gift of the executive, assembly or the bwanas of the NIO?

    2. which govt dept funds the V commission?

    3. Any views, insight/inside info on whether the appointment may be delayed until the McCord complaint regarding selection/shortlisting procedures is resolved?

    According to the powers that be, McCord lacked “awareness of the conflict”, “an ability to deal with the media” and “written presentational skills”.

    Therefore a wager. In the ultimate appointment PR skills will trump academic knowledge insight and wisdom.

    Any takers?

  • Cruimh

    Media personalities given plum jobs – Trevor Philips got a nice litle earner as well. Gloria Hunniford, Eamonn Holmes, Colin Murray – we are awash with talent, let’s scrap the assembly and let these gifted people run the place.

  • Rapunsel

    Can’t see Mike Nesbitt going down too well with many people.

    Middle class and polished perhaps but super ficial is the impression he gives me.

  • Miss Fitz

    Well, getting back to Turkey’s point, if Mike Nesbitt gets this job, he will have to prove he met the criteria. I am genuinely not aware of any publication he is responsible for concerning victims.

    His name could be a spoiler, and perhaps Marie Smith is the new VC.

  • I would be shocked if Nesbitt got the appointment, considering Ms. Smith’s credentials, as I don’t think that he is much qualified.

    Besides not knowing of anything he has written about the subject, I am most interested in how his support for fellow employee Michael Beattie’s suit against UTV – claiming its negligence, and a breach of contract of him – turned out.

    It would be a good indication of just how judicious he is in dealing with controversial matters. I suspect that he just followed his loyality to Beattie.

  • Bemused

    The farce is complete – Raymond McCord doesn’t have enough ‘awareness of the conflict’ and the new victims commissioner is Ron Burgundy! You literally couldn’t make it up…….

  • Eddie

    The best test of whether Nesbitt would be a suitable appointment would be to ask anyone who has ever worked with him – at BBC, Anderson Kenny PR or UTV. He was involved in rows at all three. Sensitivity to is said to be not among his strong points.

  • ciaran

    For a tv personality he seemed to lack something while on the tv, what was it now? Oh yes , personality.Plus he did not seem to be able to listen to the answers given to the questions he asked.Should be grand then.