In an interview with the Guardian, Sir Hugh Orde described how a key part of the power-sharing strategy has been to persuade senior politicians in the United States that policing was being conducted in a fair and even-handed way.
“The work we did in the States for the past six years has been unravelling 35 years of a very one-dimensional interpretation of policing,” said Sir Hugh, who took over his current post in 2002. He said he had spoken to all leading US politicians with an interest Northern Irish affairs, including Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy “and dear old President Bush, who I visit once a year to tell him about policing and that it’s working”. He said: “It’s not the content of the conversation that’s important but that the conversation that takes place.”
Meanwhile, with TUV MEP Jim Allister criticising Sinn Féin on the subject of policing, specifically in relation to the Omagh bombing, the Irish Times also carries this comment from deputy First Minister, SF’s Martin McGuinness.
Asked if he would call on those with information about the bombing to bring it to the police, Mr McGuinness said he shared “the very serious concerns about how the police handled this investigation from beginning to end. “That is why my position is to support the calls that are made by families here for the establishment of an independent tribunal. “They obviously have lost all faith and we have seen debacle after debacle in terms of the investigation of this terrible atrocity. What we need to do is support the families in the demands they now make.”