No shrinking violet Nuala, who tells the Irish News she nominated herself for a working peerage years ago
.I have chosen to do it because legislation is made in parliament and the House of Lords is part of Northern Ireland. The voice of Northern Ireland is not heard as strongly as it should be because there are very few working peers from Northern Ireland. Its an opportunity for me to serve more widely.
(Should this read.. “the House of Lords is part of Parliament?) Her comments suggest she wants to put herself at some distance from any idea that she is an SDLP proxy. Fair enough. I assume she was nominated by Dowing St because her elevation was bracketed along with that of the Chief Rabbi for GB, Jonathan Sachs. The main alternative to party nomination is a supporters’ write -in to the Lords Appointments Commission, the misnamed “people’s peers.” Hard to see Nuala in quite that light. Who might be Slugger’s nominees as working peers in the Upper House? Whatever the distancing, the SDLP’s welcome of “Baroness O’Loan” shows that nationalists are not ruled out, especially with increasing Lords reform.
Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London