“of course I would want to apologise for this..”

As BBC NI political editor Mark Deveport notes, it would appear that Sinn Féin’s Barry McElduff has resolved the “number of minds” he had been in and has made a personal statement of apology to the Northern Ireland Assembly. [Will there be video? – Ed] Probably.. Here it is.

From the iol report.

The Sinn Féin representative said he did not support vandalism and today told the Assembly: “Members will know that I am strongly opposed to the imposition of British symbols and emblems in this or any other part of Ireland.

“However if a handful of words which I used in August 2008 broke the public duty for members, as set out in the Code of Conduct for members, which now appears to be the case, then of course I would want to apologise for this.”

And from the same iol report

The Interim Commissioner for Standards said the post-box painting campaign constituted vandalism and concluded that Mr McElduff’s comments were not consistent with the public duty as set out in the Code.

Mr Buchanan today said: “This is at least a small but clear indication that the kind of behaviour endorsed by Barry McElduff will not be supported.

“As a member of a devolved Assembly within the UK, he is expected to adhere to the standards expected of other politicians.

“This also gives another opportunity to highlight just how powerless Sinn Féin now are when they have been reduced to believing that vandalising some post boxes is the biggest blow they can deliver at the present time for a united Ireland.”