“their absence was very noticeable…”

Interesting report in the Sunday Life records the non-attendance of any DUP, UUP or SF representatives at a farewell function for the out-going Police Ombudsman, Nuala O’Loan, before Al Hutchinson takes over the role. The parties concerned deny that it was intended as a deliberate snub [Hmmm.. – Ed]. From the article

Chief Constable Hugh Orde, Security Minister Paul Goggins and Policing Board chairman Des Rea all spoke at last week’s function in Mrs O’Loan’s honour. Alliance Party leader David Ford, SDLP Assembly member Alex Attwood and North Antrim MLA Mr O’Loan were the main political representatives. A spokesman for the DUP said of the party’s absence: “We are inundated with requests for functions like this and we can’t attend all of them.” A UUP spokesman told Sunday Life: “There were diary commitments that prevented our representatives on the Policing Board being represented.” And Sinn Fein MLA Alex Maskey said: “There was no question of any snub or slight by my party.”