“a time when maximum pressure needs to be maintained..”

Mark Devenport questions the choreography of the IMC report with the DUP reiterating their position. And, having had their claims of an imaginary DUP commitment to devolve policing and justice powers by May 2008 comprehensively rebutted, Sinn Féin’s Alex Maskey has reverted to referring to this being “a time when maximum pressure needs to be maintained on the British government to deliver their St. Andrews Agreement commitments in this area”. Unfortunately for Sinn Féin, the only commitment made by the UK government in this area was to file the report on those powers, by the Assembly Review Committee, in the parliamentary library.. which they have done. To do anything else without the Northern Ireland Assembly’s agreement would be a “constitutional nonsense”. So, now that we’re certainly not in May, why do Sinn Féin continue to lie about to misrepresent what they actually negotiated? Why, indeed..

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  • Another potential time bomb is the apparent determination by SF-DUP to keep the SDLP out of the justice department. I note Durkan today said it was sad that SF were basically saying you could not trust policing to a nationalist minister.

    Blogged on this issue yesterday on http://www.oconallstreet.com

  • borderline

    Well, Pete, you think an ILA and P&J;devolution was not negotiated.
    As do many Unionists. Fair enough.

    But I think it was, as do many Nationalists.

    But we were wrong, you say.

    OK, on reflection, we do not now recognize the PSNI as legitimate. For a start.

  • Pete Baker

    That’s not a “time-bomb”, Conall, it’s just an SDLP briefing note – and not a very good one at that.

    borderline

    I don’t do beliefs.

    What part of what I’ve said above do you believe isn’t backed up by evidence.

  • DC

    More shameless fly-posting by that lot in the SDLP, that’s the only communal thing going for them…

    I read that blog of yours Conal and there is something in it in terms of the actualities whenever policing and justice becomes devolved. But how about your party give us some reasons as to why the ministry should be devolved, usually some positive examples of new legislation or otherwise.

    Durkan’s responses to date have been equally ambivalent as the UUPs.

    I was thinking there, Alliance and you guys (SDLP and UUP) ‘the centrists’ missed the boat back at a time whenever a coalition of non legal opposition Opposition was being flouted. Especially by the Alliance Party.

    The apparent failure of you all to get it together, including the Alliance, might well prove your own undoing. For example, if SF and the DUP fail to get it together with you propping it up, could you imagine the level of failure without the SDLP and UUP being there.

    What I’m saying is, that if there had been a coalition formed at time of consideration to widening the Opposition, for Opposition’s sake, it would likely have precipitated a quick executive collapse. While in the constructed opposition you all could have formed a way forward together and lanched this coalition as an alternative to the current Executive. Calling for an election based on ways forward, perhaps this might still be an option if it goes terribly wrong for the DUP-SF.

    As usual, everyone at Stormont is right, all the parties are correct and everyone else is wrong. Now the onus is on all the parties to put up ideas to overcome the blockage together with probably less electoral reward in return. However, if that’s the price of putting people first then so be it. But for that to happen all you ‘centrists’ will need to stop being up your own respective arses, to put it nicely.

  • Norton

    It is because politicians lie to suit whatever is their own aims at the time Pete. Willie McCrea said he wouldn’t go into government without the recovery of the so-called ill-gotten gains. Tony Blair said there would be no release of prisoners without decommissioning. Do you realise that politicians lie or do you need to spend time in the remedial class?

  • Pete

    There was nothing in what you posted I disagree with. In fact I think it is a very good summation of where we are.

    I do honestly believe the SDLP could become a major issue and that is not a partisan comment.

    Conall

  • The British Government committed itself at St Andrew’s to introducing an Irish Language Act – not a Bill mind but an Act. So that would place the obligation fairly firmly in its court.

    Pete, on a personal note, you should change the record. This is getting tiresome, your constant blogging on this micro point. If this experiment is going to work, the DUP are going to have to get their heads around the reality that not having powers on policing and justice (and broadcasting and tax) devolved to NI is not going to work. And their drowning man’s grip on the IRA Army Council exists figleaf is not doing their credibility any good when the IMC, that pro unionist quango, believes the IRA Army Council has all but melted away. The poverty of your constant harping on the issue of what was negotiated is missing the bigger picture

  • Pete Baker

    Concubhar

    Alex Maskey’s statement is about the devolution of policing and justice powers.

    It is in this area that Sinn Féin have made repeated claims about commitments they secured at St Andrews – claims which they used to deliver their party over that particular rubicon.

    Hardly a “micro point” in the circumstances.

    And, as long as they continue to make those already falsified claims, I’ll keep pointing out that they are false.

    Particularly when Sinn Féin are attempting to use those false claims to further claim that others have not met those commitments – in an attempt to justify taking the ball away.

  • slug

    Pete

    Why is Alex Maskey complaining about the SDLP? What have the SDLP done to merit his criticism that they are being selfish?

  • Pete Baker

    slug

    It looks like a response to the statement Conall noted. It seems SF are a bit touchy these days..

  • cynic

    Touchy? Never!

    Feeling the heat? Yep.

    But look, all this is simple. If there was a deal, let’s see it. Publish exactly what was agreed so we poor plebs can see what they did and didn’t sign up to. Then we will see who, if anyone, is telling the truth.

    Simple really. I assume they all have copies of the agreements. Don’t they? So who will blink first and put them in the public domain?

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Pete,

    you are alleging that the political leadership of the most ruthless underground movement in Western Europe since the French Resistance, are telling porkies?

    As Concubhar O Liatháin states politely you are “missing the bigger picture”.

    I appreciate you think that the letter of the STA is vitally important – but give us all a break (after many, many similar threads) and try looking at this story from some/any other angle.

    Here’s a few ideas.

    Will big Jimbo and the Tuvvers be able to damage Robbo and the Duppers if Robbo jumps? We have statements daily from Jimbo.

    What pressure has been/will be placed on Robbo by the Englezes to jump? We have statements from the Englezes saying the time is right.

    What percentage of Duppers do not support jumping on this issue – is this a % a worry for them? There is a BT poll showing 30% against.

    Will Robbo need rejection of the Bobby Bowl (Maze) to cover his arse if he jumps? The BT had story yesterday on the Bobby Bowl.

    If SF collapse Stormo who is going to get the blame and what are the 2 governments going to do about it? What are the constitutional options?

    What evidence is there of SF electorate discontent with the way the transfer issue is panning out?

  • slug

    Sammy McNally are you still predicting devolved P&J;powers by the end of 2008?

  • Pete Baker

    Sammy Mc

    You never did reply in our previous conversation.

    In case you missed it

    Don’t stop there, Phil [and Sammy Mc].

    It’s only a first small baby-step after the ‘kerfuffle’.

    Next question is why the securocrats Englezes UK government are trying to help the Sinn Féin leadership out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves?

    Well, they did deliver their party over that policing rubicon – by whatever means necessary.

    And that sort of usefulness takes years to develop.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Slug,

    yes, I have considerable faith in Robbo to put practical politics before ideology and I think that the Bobby Bowl may also now be in the SF bag as well.

    Pete,

    according to your analysis, as I understand it – and one of it main flaws – the only people who can dig SF out of “the hole they have dug from themselves” – are the DUP – as they have the triple-whats-its-face. Is this still your view?

  • Pete Baker

    Sammy Mc

    I’ve made no assumptions about what happens next.

    Just offering some clarity on where we are, and why we are there.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Pete,

    re. Clarity.

    Can you provide some clarity as to why the DUP have been/will be involved in discussions about the transfer which will be politically benefical to SF and politcally damaging to themselves?

    Hint: This will involve talking about the DUPs difficulties with this issue and not just SFs.

  • Pete Baker

    There you go again, Sammy Mc.

    Making assumptions about what happens next.

    Try this again

    Next question is why the securocrats Englezes UK government are trying to help the Sinn Féin leadership out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves?

    Well, they did deliver their party over that policing rubicon – by whatever means necessary.

    And that sort of usefulness takes years to develop.

    After all, you maintain that the UK government are putting the pressure on.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Pete,

    “Making assumptions about what happens next”???

    the DUP have agreed ALREADY to talks – why the feck would they do this when according to you it is SF that is in a hole. That does not stack up?

    In so far as I can answer your question with its multiple links – the Englezes are siding with SF on this because they want to secure the Peace Process.

  • Pete Baker

    “the DUP have agreed ALREADY to talks – why the feck would they do this when according to you it is SF that is in a hole. That does not stack up?”

    Well, then you have nothing to worry about, Sammy Mc.

    “the Englezes are siding with SF on this because they want to secure the Peace Process.”

    Well, they did deliver their party over that policing rubicon – by whatever means necessary.

    And that sort of usefulness takes years to develop.

    As I’ve mentioned before.

  • slug

    Sammy what I don’t understand is: why Julio and Enrique getting involved?

  • borderline

    Pete,

    you madly logical bastard 😉

    “I don’t do beliefs.”

    Great stuff. I believe you.

    “What part of what I’ve said above do you believe isn’t backed up by evidence.”

    Seeing as I DO do beliefs, erm…Nowt.

    I’m just pointing out that WE thought we had a deal. If we haven’t, fine.

    Now we’re back in the failed entity, political slum, blah blah blah scenario.
    The onus on making NI ‘work’ is not on us.

    I know your iron soul probably doesn’t DO heart, but in our hearts we’re with Corporal Fraser on “Northern Ireland”.

    It’s focking doomed, mon.

  • Pete Baker

    borderline

    “I’m just pointing out that WE thought we had a deal. If we haven’t, fine.”

    And who told you you had a ‘deal’?

  • anne warren

    Posted by cynic on Sep 02, 2008 @ 09:24 PM
    If there was a deal, let’s see it. Publish exactly what was agreed so we poor plebs can see what they did and didn’t sign up to. Then we will see who, if anyone, is telling the truth.

    So who will blink first and put them in the public domain?

    I will. Here it is.

    http://www.standrewsagreement.org/agreement.htm
    http://www.standrewsagreement.org/annex_b.htm

  • Dave

    Who’d have thought that ‘republicans’ would be so keen to administer British rule in the form of P and J? Did somebody mess with their minds? 😉

  • doctor

    “I appreciate you think that the letter of the STA is vitally important – but give us all a break (after many, many similar threads) and try looking at this story from some/any other angle.”

    Can this also include a ban on italicizing every other word and believing that strike-through marks are the height of wit?:)

  • cynic

    “a time when maximum pressure needs to be maintained on the British government to deliver their St. Andrews Agreement commitments in this area”

    ……. so its all the Brit’s fault now. But what Alex doesnt seem to realise is that if he cant persaude his DUP Partners in Government, it’s all pointless.

    ……. and as a member of the Policing Board can Alex tell us what new powers this will give him and what steps he has taken so far to ‘put manners on the police’?

  • cynic

    Anne

    The published agreement is just an aspiration with no commitment and details to be worked out later in Committee. It doesn’t even aspire to devolution by May but rather to confirmation by May that there should be devolution (in line with the things to be worked out in Committee).

    But was there anything else in the form of private assurances or promises or did SF just blindly accept this as a ‘commitment’?

  • Pete Baker

    cynic

    “But was there anything else in the form of private assurances or promises or did SF just blindly accept this as a ‘commitment’?”

    Well, according to the deputy First minister, there’s this..

    “When I asked the question about St Andrews I was told on the Saturday prior to the 26th (of March) – that was the 24th – that the DUP would stand by St Andrews,” said Mr McGuinness.

    “It was Ian junior that said it. But nobody at the meeting said: ‘No, we can’t do that.’ When you negotiate with people and someone tells you that they will stand by it and nobody else disagrees, I think it’s fair on our part to leave the meeting on the basis that you have an agreement.”

    Not that that actually amounts to anything else..