By election for Craigavon

Tonight’s council meeting in Craigavon seems to have been an extremely confused affair with, I am told, difficulties surrounding whether abstentions count as opposing a co-option. However, the end result seems to be that a by election for Lurgan ward is inevitable after the TUV’s candidate failed to get a seconder. The TUV’s Ivor McConnell has issued a statement which I will reproduce below: the reaction of the other parties is awaited.

“TUV deplores the fact that tonight the DUP and UUP have forced a by-election in Craigavon, which will cost the ratepayers tens of thousands of pounds. This TUV vacancy ought to have been filled by a TUV co-option, but the DUP welched on its agreement not to oppose a TUV co-option by proposing their own candidate. Our good faith in not forcing a by-election in Ballymoney has been shamelessly exploited. Sadly, even in local government it seems the DUP is not to be trusted.
“The ratepayers of Lurgan can still be saved much of this unnecessary expense by the other Unionist parties not nominating candidates. Indeed David Simpson and Stephen Moutray both pledged in August that they would recommend to the DUP that they should not fight a by-election, if one was forced. We’ll see what value attaches to that undertaking in the coming weeks.”

  • Conquistador

    It’s a shame the gentlemen’s agreement was not adhered to.

    Still it may be interesting though. The UUP ‘won’ the DEA in 2005, and given the bad blood between the TUV and DUP I suspect they’re the favourites to win, should they stand.

  • slug

    This will give the UUP a boost and put wind in the sails of the UCU New Force.

  • Bigger Picture

    Was Ivor McConnell the candidate Turgon? He is from that area or did he not have the cojones to put his money where his mouth is?

  • Mark McGregor

    It actual sounds like an amusing and clever ruse by the DUP. They didn’t oppose co-option but the TUV couldn’t find a seconder. Co-option can’t take place over to election. All bets off as the TUV couldn’t meet their end of the bargain.

    Perfect slap it up ye poltics and even better they screwed them on the early bit of the deal.

    Looks like these TUV types will be easy prey for the DUP.

  • Sean Og

    Was David Calvert (former DUP cllr) the TUV candidate for co-option? That may explain why he couldn’t get a seconder. 🙂

  • Bigger Picture

    I’mn lead to believe it was David Calvert formly of the DUP who was to stand. He was shot by the INLA in the 80’s. He was one of the many councillors who got banned from standing for local elections and was surcharged over the St Peters affair. According to the jungle drums his choice was not universally popular with the local flat earthers

  • Sammy

    Sorry the above post is by myself not Big Picture I was replying to his post and put the name in the wrong place-if any mods could amend or replace the post I would be grateful

  • Bigger Picture


    Thanks for that, why would he have been preferred over Ivor McConnell though? OK, granted it’s Lurgan not Portadown but you would have thought they would have wanted to put party leaders in elected positions as soon as possible?

    There may be some other rational explanation, but it just doesn’t add up?

  • Ulick

    David Calvert — the man who organised all local opposition to the Anglo-Irish Agreement while privately pocketing tens of thousands of pounds from the International Fund for Ireland via his ‘House of Brindle’ business. Gotta love a man of principle…

  • iluvni

    Stupid decision by the TUV to enter into any kind of pact with the DUP in the first place.

  • www.

    I support the TUV but would not vote for David Calvert. Surely they could have found a better candidate. They definitely could not have found a worse one.

  • fin

    Two cracking stories in the Portadown Times about this

    It looks like the Jimhadists can really unite the political parties of NI, these are their excuses for not been there (except SF, who fair play showed up – possibly to enjoy the craic)

    Mr Twyble, the leader of the UUP group , said, “We realise there will be difficulty in getting someone to second the name of David Calvert, so we stayed out.”

    Stephen Moutray, DUP group leader, commented, “We made an agreement with the TUV that we wouldn’t oppose a co-option and we have stood by that.”

    SDLP’s Delores Kelly said, “None of our members were available through personal reasons.”

    And a spokesman for Sinn Fein commented, “It’s a matter for the unionists. We simply aren’t interested.”

  • third class honours

    Maybe the DUP could stand the little fellow they wanted in Enniskillen

  • disinterested observer

    Its a really shame that Harry Hamilton seems to have chosen Craigavon council – which only has 2 years existence left – over Westminster.
    I guess he is hoping to line himself up for full time council position of the new council – whatever its called or maybe Stormont?

  • loki

    disinterested- it gives Harry a chance to get in some practice before GE and by then hopefully everyone will be more inclined to co-option for the remainder of this extended term. Besides, Harry should liven up meetings no end given his day job 😉

  • elvis parker

    Actually Harry has a normal day job like the rest of us – something to do with food retailing I believe.
    He only turns into Flash in the evenings!!

  • hopefully the Alliance Party will stand.

  • Delta Omega

    Hopefully the TUV learn their lesson well and don’t be DUPed by the DUP again

  • Panic, These Ones Likes It Up Them.

    whilst t’unionistd are bickering and bollocking t’union could be gone for a burton.

  • fair_deal

    “Hopefully the TUV learn their lesson well ”

    Perhaps the electorate will learn that a party that can’t successfully negotiate and implement something as simple as a council co-option maybe aren’t the ones to entrust a full-blown renegotiation of our political institutions?

  • Niamh

    Does this spell the end of the Entente Cordiale between UCUNF and TUV?

  • Bigger Picture


    Ivor McConnell can’t clearly manage a piss up in a brewery based on this mess. His attempts then to blame it on the DUP just make him look weak and pathetic.

    This is the man who is meant to be the organiser, in chief, of TUV. The man who coordinated a european election and severly dented the DUP. And yet when left to sort out a council co-option he doesn’t even make sure that there will definatley be a seconder to a candidate that everyone else seems to loath and despise?! It is incompetence on a gigantic level.

    Clearly Jim is going to have to do a serious amount of hand holding when even his most trusted lieutenants are so politically inept and naive

  • Inspector Cleauso

    The TUV’s support hitherto has been about people voting against something not for something.

    It is inevitable, considering exactly who is involved in the TUV, that given enough space the it will self-distruct. Granted after having done a lot of electoral damage to Unionism in general and the DUP in particular.

  • exile


    do you subscribe to the language used in the headline of the following press release?

    Hardly good for community cohesion now, is it?

  • 6countyprod


    this is a big problem for the TUV across the province. It’s going to be difficult for the party when its ‘A’ Team is made up chiefly of disgruntled old men who cannot get along with anyone other than those who are willing to tickle their stubborn little egos!

    Calvert has been rejected a number of times at the ballot box by the electorate of his home area, and the elected politicians are only reflecting the wishes of their constituents. Everyone in the area knows his pettiness and the problems he would have created for Unionist and Nationalist alike on the council.

    The TUV undoubtedly would have retained their seat if anyone other than Calvert had been nominated. But Calvert rules the roost in the Craigavon TUV branch, so the blame for the lose of the seat is squarely on his shoulders.

  • Seimi

    exile @ 24 – the title of the TUV statement has now been changed from ‘Leprechaun Language’ to ‘Irish Language’…..wonder why?

  • 6countyprod

    Slugger Power!