The News Letter and UTV’s Ken Reid have been tweeting tonight what looks like being the latest episode in the UUP-DUP united unionist soap opera. David McNarry has resigned from the UUP Assembly group after Tom Elliott withdrew him as vice-chair of education committee, though stopped short of taking away the party whip.
The BBC add:
Mr McNarry said he spoke to the party leader on Friday evening by telephone. And Mr Elliott told him he was being disciplined as a result of an article that appeared in the Belfast Telegraph last Monday.
Although Mr Elliott said he would not be removing the party whip, Mr McNarry in response informed the leader he was resigning with immediate effect from the assembly group.
The article was an interview Mr McNarry gave, in which he revealed that he had been meeting the DUP to discuss closer co-operation and maximising the unionist vote. These talks had previously been secret and the article caused a backlash throughout the assembly group and the party.
Update – Martina Purdy has published some more details about tonight’s events.
Picture of Tom Elliott and David McNarry on a happier occasion – the October opening of the
David McNarry Advice Centre in Saintfield. UUP
Alan Meban. Tweets as @alaninbelfast. Blogs about cinema and theatre over at Alan in Belfast. A freelancer who writes about, reports from, live-tweets and live-streams civic, academic and political events and conferences. He delivers social media training/coaching; produces podcasts and radio programmes; is a FactCheckNI director; a member of Ofcom’s Advisory Committee for Northern Ireland; and a member of the Corrymeela Community.