“A cursory glance at the St Andrews Agreement..”

With the, apparent, non-negotiations at stalemate, Sinn Féin have wheeled out their favourite fire-fighter, John O’Dowd. But he needs some new lines. Here’s what he’s said to the BBC

John O’Dowd from Sinn Fein argued that 1 May 2008 was the date agreed at the St Andrews talks for the transfer of powers. “A cursory glance at the St Andrews Agreement clearly shows that the date mentioned for transfer was May 1st 2008. “No amount of selective reading will alter that fact and the more important issue that the DUP are in default of that agreement,” he said.

It’s a line other party members have tried before. But try a close reading of that agreement, John. Rather than a “cursory glance”. And didn’t your party colleague Mitchel McLaughlin tell us that

In any event, the issue of whether the DUP agreed to the May 2008 deadline for the transfer of policing and justice powers, or indeed subscribed to the introduction of the Irish Language Act, is a red herring.

That was because, as Eamonn McCann had pointed out in September 2008

The statement by the two governments which the party [Sinn Féin] is now relying on — “It is our view that the implementation of the (St Andrews) agreement published today should be sufficient to build the community confidence necessary for the Assembly to request the devolution of criminal justice and policing from the British Government by May 2008” — falls a semantic mile short of a deadline.

We know why Sinn Féin have created this crisis, again. Maurice Hayes identified it as the “main element in [their internal] bill of sale”. But are they prepared for the potential political vacuum?

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  • Cynic2

    This morning his rant about ‘end of the orange state’ even shocked Gregory. Not one of his best performances. He really didn’t like it when told that Gerry had admitted that it took SF three years of careful work to stoke up the Garvaghy Road row. Now they have to unwind it all again. What will the poor voters think.

    Perhaps LOL No 1 could offer John honorary membership and a free bowler hat for the day to help take the bad look off it for SF. After all he kept talking about ‘equality’

  • Is there an official record of the negotiations that they electorate can read so that we all can know what deals are being done/what schemes are being cooked up at our expense and for our own good?

    Or is it all a big dirty secret to be kept hidden away from everybody because of what it would reveal?

    Hell, that aint no way to carve up a nation and expect it to prosper……. for that is holding a nation to crooked terrorist ransom with the main perps surely identified as the ones sitting in on the talks and keeping everything secret.

  • jack

    But are they prepared for the potential political vacuum? no Pete ,they did not see the possibility of it even coming .. they called this one wrong.Apart from being a political party the DUP are a cult .I asked on slugger if SF had the balls for this the (Romans and barbarians)were used by greenflag as some sort of historical precedent,yes there was merit in that .However And apart from all thats gone on here Susanne Breen took Mary Lou apart on Pat Kenny radio show this morning .All of south now know just how indefensible the Adams brand is .This will prompt SF members in the south ask ,can Gerry not talk for himself ? why is the leader pushing Kelly etc in front of the cameras? AS for court action ,Well we could ask some of the bookmakers for odds. stand by for the Tribune on Sun .

  • west belfast

    I thought Tim McGarry summed it up perfectly last night on H&M when he said the shock story of the week was that if you say you have been sexually assaulted then the IRA are not the best organisation to carry out the investigation.

    in the year 1998 – If you wanted expertise on home made car bombs call the IRA. If you alleged you were horribly raped and sexually assaulted don’t.

    Anyway have you seen Gerry Adams’ latest blog?


    It would appear the DUP working on the sabbath last sunday, for the first time since the good Lord walked the earth, made the Shinners dig their heels in. Serves the DUP right – bring on the election!

  • wee slabber

    It is time SF ditched these DUP bigots and moved out of Stormont. Make them fight an election when the least want it.

  • {b]Behaving Worse than Spoilt Children …. and Serial Losers and Abusers of the Peoples’ Trust[/b]

    What a shower of self serving wasters there are in Stormont whenever they cannot agree to get on with job of providing good governance, for everybody, together and give the people what they need, rather than what they want if what they want isn’t different [for who wants anything old and tired and worn out] and compatible with a new peaceful and prosperous future. Leaders with the Confidence of the Community behind them? Don’t make me laugh.

    They couldn’t even lead a rabble without having to do it from the safety of being right at the back and protected by idiot security behind closed doors.

    Why do you even entertain the parasites? Is it the bombs and the bullets they are threatening you with again, that has them pratting about on the political stage as if they are ready, willing and able to govern, whenever so bloody obviously they aren’t?

    Strewth, are you mice or men …. squeak up.

  • McGrath

    When are these recent “non negotiations” on P&J really going to be described as what they really were, i.e parades negotiations?

    Could any Unionist/Protestant out there concisely explain what the real and actual benefits of parades to protestant society are?

    I am asking an honest question, I have no malicious agenda.

  • jack

    Wee slabber ,I think you may well be disappointed after meeting tomorrow

  • heamaisbharney

    “It is time SF ditched these DUP bigots and moved out of Stormont. Make them fight an election when the least want it. ”

    Does Sinn Féin really want an election just now? I hae me doots.

  • heamaisbharney

    “Is there an official record of the negotiations that they electorate can read so that we all can know what deals are being done/what schemes are being cooked up at our expense and for our own good?”

    But that would be honest and sensible, wouldn’t it? Our reps don’t do honest and sensible all that often or all that well.

  • [b]Definite Vision and AIdDifferent Leadership Model Needed [/b]

    [quote]But that would be honest and sensible, wouldn’t it? Our reps don’t do honest and sensible all that often or all that well. …. Posted by heamaisbharney on Jan 22, 2010 @ 05:25 PM[/quote]

    Then it is high time that full transparency and disclosure was insisted upon, and delivered with all possible speed, [and the Iraq Inquiry/Chilcot Inquiry format is a very suitable template to consider, just in case there is no imagination in Stormont to put forward a simple virtual process which can be easily accessed by a vast range of folk] so that all may know who is suitable for executive high office and who is not, who is working to present the people with a new vibrant future and who is determined to have them remember and worship a long gone and irrelevant past.

    And that will also deliver a Open Source Meritocracy to Democracy for Freedom of Expression and Good Opinion to Flourish with the Support of a Confident Community in Full Possession of All of the Facts/Trials and Tribulations/Fears and Worries and Permit All to Offer a Positive Constructive Solution to Any Problem which would require one.

    For to Imagine that the Brightest of Beings are Politicians, is so Ridiculous as to be Laughable. Some of them are only in it for the Easy Money and to deny that that is true, is to suggest that they are different from anyone/everyone else, and you would know that that would be patently untrue too.

    However, it may be the case that Technology and a Virtual Program for Good Beta Governance, using the Internet and Media and AI for Intelligence Delivery of Vital Future Information, will be Delivering to Stormont a Live Package of 21st Century Networking Measures for Public and Private Crash Test Use in a Novel Global CyberSpace Project, which will be Exported and Adapted/Adopted and Fine Tuned to and for Any and All Good Governance and Beta Government Needs, thus Lifting and Removing any too Heavy an Intellectual Burden in Progress off Inadequate, Yet to be Strengthened, Shoulders.

    After all, there is no Point in Flogging a Dead Horse and a Lame Duck Assembly, is there, whenever Help can be Universally Provided by those working in SMARTer IntelAIgent Systems and Networks InterNetworking JOINT Applications and NIRobotIQs.

    And perfectly suited to the Renegade Rogue Apache Gene in the Celtic Tiger Viking Warrior Psyche. And yes, it is also an Apache Program Incubation with an Innovative dDutch and/or IntelAIgently Designed Application Programming Interface.

  • tacapall

    Go ahead Mars if I was a millionaire, I would buy a copy of that software off you it sounds crazy but sur the same sort of stuff brought mankind images from the outer unervirse, maybe your right, maybe we need that kind of program to unravel the ambiguity of The St Andrews Agreement whether its bad faith or whatever, one things for sure its lack of understanding and communication that has got us in this position.