SDLP: No to a head to head but would consider a more inclusive debate

This whole issue started two weeks ago when the Sinn Fein candidate for South Belfast, Máirtín Ó Muilleoir asked for a debate with the sitting MP Alasdair McDonnell.

It is my understanding that the DUP Candidate, Jonathan Bell is also game for a debate.

However the key question is what about the sitting MP? Speaking to Slugger an SDLP spokesperson tonight said;

The SDLP has received no formal invitation to participate in any debate in South Belfast. While we would consider any opportunity to discuss the issues important to people, any potential debate must be inclusive and representative of the range of political views in the area.

That is a no to a head to head with his Sinn Fein opponent  but there is a possibility of a debate with other parties included like the DUP, UUP and Alliance.

David McCann holds a PhD in North-South relations from University of Ulster. You can follow him on twitter @dmcbfs