“You don’t have to agree with the other person’s point of view..”

Apparently, the deadlock in the Northern Ireland Executive is “very serious”. Whether that’s serious enough for Sinn Féin to take the ball away walk out of the administration isn’t clear. But a quick note to whoever is responsible for this BBC report.

Sinn Fein say the St Andrews Agreement set May this year as a target date for the devolution of policing powers to the Assembly, although the DUP has said it is not bound by any timetable.

Sinn Féin have repeatedly claimed that the St Andrews Agreement set a deadline of May 2008 – despite what the actual agreement stated. Whilst the DUP have consistently pointed to the conditional nature of the timing. But the real reason behind the current crisis is worth focussing on.

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  • USA

    Hyperlink Pete,
    You are losing credibility with your constant harping on this issue. Especially since you are backing the wrong horse. Devolution of P+J or no Assembly, this is a deal breaker issue. Let the dice fall where they may….do you have anything new for us? Preferably something that is not framed by your DUP bias.
    If the DUP keep this up the ILA will arrive from London gift wrapped with a big bow on it.

  • steve

    LOL Pete no matter how often you try to peddle this story no ones buying

    Least of all Sinn Fein

  • picador

    Has no one heard yet? The world will end shortly after the stock exchanges open tomorrow!

    No one will give a toss about our Mickey Mouse Parliament.

  • USA

    Well in that case, i’m off to spend the pitiful remnants of my investments on a carry out.

  • Henry94

    I don’t understand why the DUP are pushing on this. It was clearly part of the understanding and not only that it is clearly necessary if policing is going to work in nationalist areas.

    To take such a risk for short-term political advantage makes no sense to me. It might make life difficult for Sinn Fein but not to the benefit of the SDLP. It is the dissidents who will benefit. Playing hardball is one thing but painting everybody into a corner is just inept.

    We will see if Peter Robinson is a leader or not by how he resolves this.

  • Jimmy

    If Devolution of powers was actually part of P&J;in Saint Andrews,so be it, the DUP cant cherrypick on this issue.
    If a resolution cant be found,perhaps the Secretary of state should step in and impose it or at least create enough sanctions so they can get on with the job they were elected to do.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Heard Posh boy Davy talking about this – he fudged his answer on setting a date for the transfer of Police and Justice but he appears to be with the govts. SF and the SDLP.

    No clear word, that I have heard, from Alliance or UU on their positions. I think Robbo will jump and I suspect the UU having said feck all will then try to call him a Lundy. If this happens – surely it will give Posh boy Dave something to think about before leaping into bed with Wee Reggie.

  • Zoonpol

    It not what the St Andrew’s Agreement says but what the Act that implements this agreement that matters.

  • Billy


    Despite your constant harping on about what was actually said at St Andrews, the situation has moved on.

    Do you really think that anyone outside NI really gives a shit about this amidst the current finincial turmoil?

    There is extremely little interest in this beyond the North and, if the assembly does fall, most people in the UK won’t care.

    The reality of the situation, despite your constant whining, is that the UK, US + Irish govts want P&J;devolved or, at the very least, a definite date set.

    It is true that the DUP are not obliged to do this and the UK govt won’t enforce it. However, there will be a price to pay for this intransigence.

    I had to laugh about Robinson’s empty threat about “serious consequences” – what is he going to do? Stay away from the Labour + Tory conferences, I bet Brown and Cameron are both really cut up about that.

    The only serious consequence would be the assembly failing and that would be to the detriment of Unionists much more than Nationalists.

    Whether you like it or not, DUP behaviour on this issue along with the Irish Language act, the Maze and the ridiculous actions of some DUP members, have painted a picture of a DUP who are not interested in partnership govt and are intransigent.

    From a moderate Nationalist point of view, I don’t think the DUP are interested in anything other than their own Unionist agenda. They are clearly incapable of working with Nationalists as equals so I couldn’t care less if the assembly goes.

    You seem to think that, if it does go, there will be widespread condemnation of Sinn Fein and sympathy for the DUP – this will not be the case.

    The UK govt certainly don’t want a return to Direct rule. If they are forced to do so they, along with the US + Irish govts, will see this quite rightly as a result of DUP intransigience.

    Robinson seems to delude himself that he is calling the shots. The reality, as ever, is that the UK govt foots the bill so they call the shots – albeit heavily influenced by the US + Irish govts.

    Personally, I’m loving this. Either the DUP will bend or the assembly will fall. I don’t care which as either can only benefit Nationalists.

    You can harp on abot the St Andrews agreement all you want (and I’m sure you will). The political reality is that there is no pressure on Sinn Fein but plenty of pressure on the DUP.

    The Unionists may not want to devolve P&J;but all the other players do – it is the Unionists who are standing alone not Sinn Fein.

  • USA

    I’ve been telling this guy the same thing for at least a month. It’s clear even from 3000 miles away in the US. His inability to see the writing on the wall is probably a symptom of that old habit unionists have of blaming SF and thinking they are winning. That is just sooo 80’s.
    Alternatively he is just driven by his party (DUP) position.