The latest part of the war of words saga between the DUP and TUV has been over policing an justice and specifically the power which Martin McGuinness as deputy first minister might have over judicial appointments. Jim Allister launched a Policing and Justice document which attacked the DUP over the possibility that if P&J were devolved, even to the likes of Alliance, then the OFMDFM would still have control over the appointment of judges and the Attorney General. In reply the Nigel Dodds has countered “the DUP has made it absolutely clear that there can be no question of powers over judicial appointments being devolved to any Department including OFMDFM where there would be a Sinn Fein role. In reply to that Allister has welcomed what he says is a change in DUP policy.
Whatever the rights and wrongs of who said what before or after whom: it does now look as if the DUP is set to oppose the possibility of OFMDFM having any involvement in judicial appointments. It is unclear what SF will make of this and whether or not that will add to the problem which the policing and justice issue already represents.