“the flexibility to move away from four full-time commissioners..”

As the BBC reports here, the Assembly has finally been allowed to start the debate on the Victims Commission Bill and assorted amendments. Sinn Féin’s Francie Molloy futures that “It will ensure a strong and effective Victims Commission..” Mark Devenport rounds up the amendments under discussion.

The proposals would give the First and Deputy First Ministers the option to appoint a Chief Commissioner, without requiring them to do so. The commission could decide some matters by a majority vote, but others, involving finance and its plan of work, would require unanimity. No one with a criminal conviction would be allowed to work for the Commission, unless the First and Deputy First Ministers give their prior approval.

And UTV notes other points of interest.From the UTV report

OFMDFM Junior Minister Jeffrey Donaldson (DUP, Lagan Valley) said: “The needs of victims and survivors will change and the new structures of support will develop.

“The legislation is drafted in a way that gives the flexibility to move away from four full-time commissioners if necessary.

“The legislation as drafted would allow for the possibility in future of a commission that could be made up of a number of part-time commissioners with part-time remuneration rather than full-time commissioners if required.”

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  • steve48

    A terrible performance by Jeffrey which has seen him degenerate into Provo lingo on a number of occassions. Arrogance and ignorance in equal measure.

  • PeaceandJustice

    The DUP are putting terrorists on the same level as their victims. I don’t recall seeing that in their manifesto. We also have the situation where McGuinness caused many of the victims yet is one of the people responsible for looking after them. Except he is very, very proud of the murder, torture and bombings carried out by Sinn Fein PIRA. A sick joke.

  • truth and justice

    What a load of nonscence the DUP put an amendment to stop people with convictions from geting a job or being a commissioner the UUP voted against that. They also have the power in the future to reduce the four commissioners to one and have changed the voting so that Sinn Feins commissioner cant veto what the other three do the UUP voted against that.I dont mind people playing political games but the above two notices are really totally incorrect.

  • Damian O’Loan

    Truth & Justice,

    “the DUP put an amendment to stop people with convictions from geting a job”

    You are incorrect.

    “(6A) The First Minister and deputy First Minister acting jointly shall remove from office as a member anyone convicted of a criminal offence arising out of a conflict-related incident.

    (6B) For the purposes of this paragraph the definition of ‘conflict-related incident’ shall have effect as if for the word ‘Commission’ there were substituted ‘First Minister and deputy First Minister acting jointly’.” — [Mr Kennedy.]

    That’s an Ulster Unionist amendment.

    We can then note Junior Minister Donaldson’s response:

    “In paragraph 3(6)(a) of schedule 1 to the Bill, provision has already been made for the First Minister and the deputy First Minister to remove a commissioner if that person is convicted of a criminal offence”

    and Dolores Kelly’s telling counter:

    “I thank the Minister for his intervention, but that does not deal with past convictions, and in particular, conflict-related convictions.”

    Not that any of that should detract from the pathetic strength of this legislation, or the shambles that has been OFMDFM’s handling of the issue.

  • truth and justice

    I am afraid you are wrong on this one Damian!

  • PeaceandJustice

    To truth and justice – The DUP have agreed to the appointment of someone linked with Sinn Fein PIRA. Spin it how you like but the DUP have put terrorists on the same level as their victims. Another broken promise.

  • waffler

    A total joke and the 2 fingers up to all citizens.
    Proof that certain people want to totally control what and what not will be investigated so as to prevent any possable linkage to themselves.
    Spinn fein always insisted the police investigating the police as a farce.
    What has happened to accountability and transparency we have been told so much about prior to elections ?
    And as for who decides what by means of past convictions.
    What of their own convictions and worse they have been involved with.
    We can see more clearly now the dictatorship we have voted into power.