What’s the answer to Jim Allister’s point?

Mick quotes Jim Allister QC saying “Obtaining counsel’s opinion comes no where close to “independent investigation”, yet, strangely, no media correspondent seems to have challenged this audacious claim.” Well, Slugger did and laid out an alternative approach which could produce an interim result quite quickly. Whether that could be quick enough to settle the perfect storm now raging is a different question. Focusing on Peter Robinson’s direct involvement in the money issue, Eamonn’s interview underlines the question – why didn’t he insist that Iris tell him all about it when he “overheard her” making arrangements to pay back the money – weeks before the full breakdown and when she seems to have been able to take his prompts? Why did he not ask Selwyn Black all about it? Assuming he heard the names to whom the money was to be repaid, why did not alarm bells begin to ring loudly over possible conflict of interest even if the cheques weren’t made out to her? It was Jim Allister who raised the history of their connections on Talkback yeserday. Today David Gordon in the Belfast Telegraph spells some of them out ( link corrected, thanks) . And did Mr Robinson not know that the money was connected to the lock keepers’ cottage project run by his old bailwick Castlereagh Council? where conflict of interest was possible, to put it mildly?

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