DRD and NI Water officials told not to co-operate with UTV…

Slugger understands that UTV have been taking a very close interest in the NI Water story about the sacked non executives, possibly for a documentary programme in the late summer, and before the next scheduled meeting of the PAC. Now it seems that officials in DRD, headed up by Conor Murphy’s Permanent Secretary, Paul Priestly and NI Water, headed up by CEO Laurence McKenzie (‘They tell me I’m being autocratic – I say – get used to it”), have been told not to co-operate with the programme makers.

Hmmm… their lack of candour with the PAC hasn’t exactly done either organisation a lot of good so far… And it is sending out – along with Peter Dixon’s intemperate attack on an important function of our democratic institution at Stormont – a pretty poor message… Particularly when there are important matters of public interest at stake here…

My suspicion is that if UTV get to some of the material we’re hearing about, it will raise quite a few more questions than we’ve been able to share publicly…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty