Executive tensions..

Sinn Féin MLA [and MP – Ed], Conor Murphy, has now joined his party colleague, Alex Maskey, and another SF member of the Northern Ireland Executive, Michelle Gildernew, in criticising the Minister for Social Development, the SDLP’s Margaret Ritchie, over her handling of the issue of funds for that UPRG project – although, as the BBC’s Mark Devenport pointed out on 1 June, “her basic message [even then was] ‘Your money or Your Guns!’)”. That message will, undoubtedly, be tested as the 60-day deadline approaches. Meanwhile, the silence from other Executive Ministers is also worth noting. Particularly when, as Lindy McDowell pointed out in the Belfast Telegraph, the underlying problem is a result of the apparently ongoing Process™ – which the UDA’s de facto leader, Jackie McDonald is all too aware of.. Adds Just a quick note of this report – “The Ulster Political Research Group (UPRG) is blaming criminal elements and is calling for the police to resolve the situation.”

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  • Yokel

    Ah crap, I just read the headline of this thread and thought it was the title of a new American TV drama.

  • Dewi

    Brilliant Yokel !

  • Cuchulainn

    this is just an attempt for SF to try and put Margaret Richie under critism in an attempt to underline are effort to take the westminster seat in South Down

    Ruane cant come out and od it because she is her rivial, but the rest of SF can make these we jives, as they are the only people to critise her! everyone else praised her!

    if they disagreed so much, then why didnt they tell her thier concerns at an executive meeting!

  • kensei

    “if they disagreed so much, then why didnt they tell her thier concerns at an executive meeting!”

    Actually read Conor Murphy’s comments. Just a wee suggestion, there.

  • Cuchulainn,

    To be honest I dont think anybody in SF even gives a second thought to the Westminster seat. Since the introduction of The Assembly and the tough ongoing battle for votes in The South, success in South Down (while welcome) could hardly be described as Sinn Feins most pressing political objective…

    There are bigger fish to fry…

  • Cuchulainn


    u really think SF dnt care about the westminster seat?

    ill disagree with that, they may not use it, but SF do want to win them, i.e. moving mcguinness into mid-ulster to take the seat, trying fro the foyle seat in 2005, and the massive efforet they put in to successfully gain the armagh newry seat!

    they are a big deal to them, i believe one of the main reasons Ruane is in the executive is to build up her profile! same as Magartet Richie!

  • redhaze

    As if macswiney.

  • joeCanuck

    We have an artificial set up at Stormont(needed for now, arguably), so there is no sense of collective cabinet responsibility or solidarity.
    Hopefully the next generation will lead us to “normal” politics.
    Until then, I say “ignore the feckers and try to get on with your neighbours”.

  • Hmmmm. Shame the Shinners couldn’t get as hot and bothered about the New Labour welfare legislation Ritchie introduced.

  • Alan

    I know he’s merely describing our current topsy-turvey devolved government,I just don’t like Conor Murphy’s interpretation of the roles of Ministers.

    It may well be up to each Minister to run their Department, but it cannot be good government that requires only that a Minister runs it “as they see fit”!

    How do we ensure competence, correctness and coherence when the structure is based on party pawns, placed to screw more votes at the next election, when there is no agreed manifesto and when members of the executive must compete politically to survive?

  • lib2016

    Nice to see the Shinners playing ´soft policeman´ to Ritchie´s ´hard policeman´. Wonder where they learned that?

  • An Bearnach

    There is something very odd happening in the Sinn Fein Press office. Saturday’s offering from Conor Murphy is absolutely riddled with misspellings. Worse, it is contorted to the point that one wonders what he is talking about. Margaret Ritchie has been trying to get the Executive to discuss the UDA money for months, not just last week. Marty and the Doc control the agenda. Alex Maskey was also notably incoherent on Evening Extra when he tried but failed to land a punch on Ritchie on the day she announced the 60-day deadline. Are the Shinners relying too much on the departmental press advisers instead of the tried and trusted hacks of Connolly House?

  • Turgon

    An Bearnach,
    “Are the Shinners relying too much on the departmental press advisers instead of the tried and trusted hacks of Connolly House?”

    Are they worried that the “trusted hacks” are actually all security forces agents?

  • slug

    Suspect the voting public will be with Ritchie but could be wrong.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    It all seems quite strange. I suspect Ritchie will bottle it at the end of the 60 days, as the UDA will have done ‘something’ (although they already claim to have done enough).

    Don’t really know what SF are complaining about. Odd that they seem to be taking the UDA’s side.