Elliott launches his Private Members Bill to prevent the naming of public facilities after “terrorists”‏

Well this is always going to be controversial but the UUP MLA, Tom Elliott is launching a Private Members Bill to prevent the naming of public facilities after those convicted of terrorist offences.

Speaking about his bill he says;

Today I am commencing a consultation process which is the first step to introducing legislation which prohibits publicly funded facilities or entities being named after anyone who has been convicted of a terrorist related offence or membership of a proscribed organisation.

“For years Sinn Fein and other groups have been glorifying terrorists who were responsible for some of the most brutal murders in Northern Ireland. Such actions only serve to polarise and divide communities as well as having a hugely negative effect on the victims and the families of victims, who were created by those who are being glorified.

“There is currently no legislation in place to restrict this happening and the recent furore which has centred on the naming of a children’s play park in Newry after the convicted IRA terrorist Raymond McCreesh is concrete proof that such legislation is required.

“Legislation would introduce clarity and certainty for local councils, Government departments and agencies, and create uniformity across Northern Ireland. Failure to introduce legislation will simply pro-long the current situation where naming decisions can negatively affect community relations and risk further division along political and religious lines.

The consultation is open until 13th April and you can submit a response here.

What do you think? Is this a good idea? How do we define a terrorist in Northern Ireland?

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  • Alan N/Ards

    Niall, You say that your criticism of the UDR was not a slight on my fathers character. Here’s a portion of what you posted, “The UDR and their members, all of them, embraced the sectarian, racist and bigoted extremes of the far right”. Three little words – ALL OF THEM – obviously includes my father and the many decent soldiers in the regiment. My late father would have commented on the “undesirables in the regiment. He didn’t trust them, nor did he socialize with them. The question should be asked is how hard or easy it was to get into the regiment? If a person applies to join and had no criminal record, or a known association with paramilitaries then there was no reason to reject his application. There is no doubt the loyalist groupings cleverly infiltrated the regiment. But to try and smear every member is wrong and dishonest.

    You obviously have a great admiration of Raymond McCreesh and he was a member of the provos in South Armagh. This was the gang which put to death ten protestant civilians in a sectarian attack at Kingsmill. I have no idea whether he was there at the massacre or not. maybe he joined it after the event. Either way, he would have known that the outfit he was in, committed an act so awful that they denied it for years. Did he support this sectarian massacre?

    How can you accuse the many decent UDR soldiers of sectarianism while holding this man is such high esteem?

  • John Collins

    If they knew who the Provos were why did they not just arrest and imprison them and how come when internment took place the vast majority of the top IRA men escaped?

  • John Collins

    Above should have read ‘Ira men escaped the net initially’.

  • Zeno

    Oh I don’t think so mucker. The rules of debate are that the onus is on the person who made the statement to provide the proof.

  • Zeno

    “Raymond McCreesh and the nine other Irish hunger strikers are revered around the world”

    It’s a nice idea but most people in Ireland couldn’t name 3 of them, never mind the rest of the world.

  • carl marks

    the only problem with your theory is that
    A, UDR Intel papers were regularly found in the possession of loyalists and thy still murdered very few “players” instead went for the ;Any taig will do, tactic.
    This mythology spread about by many unionists that somehow the loyalists were fighting a war against the IRA, is obviously nonsense!
    the loyalist’s were cowardly back shooters and torturer’s who went for easy innocent targets.
    there would not have been more dead Provo’s as you say, because they didn’t go after Provo’s!

  • Johnny Irish

    I agree that the raison d’etre of the loyalist paramilitaries was purely sectarian. However the provos also got involved in some sectarian killings though these were usually local and not necessarily sanctioned at brigade level. People mention the terrible Kingsmills slaughter. I remember at the time that this atrocity was carried out to send out a message to the Glenanne gang to desist their killings of catholics or this will be repeated. the fact the IRA gang used a cover name would suggest that the incident was not part of the IRA campaign.
    There were many strands to the troubles. Both religious and political.
    However I believe the IRA were political. They hardly blew up 18 paras at Narrow water because they were prods and I doubt they killed Lord Louis on the same day because he was an Anglican !!!!

  • Johnny Irish

    The UDR were distrusted by the mainstream British army. Intelligence reports state that the British believed the udr to be heavily infiltrated by loyalist paramilitaries. One company in particular was thought to have 80% of its men linked to loyalist.groupings.
    The udr were so untrustworthy that they were not allowed to serve in west belfast, parts of north belfast and many other parts of the province.

  • npbinni

    exactly. they don’t do that anymore – well, most of them – but they certainly are bent on making those left behind suffer as much as possible.

  • John Collins

    How can Presbyterians celebrate the Boyne and King Billy. His victory meant they as well as Roman Catholics were treated as second class citizens for the next hundred plus years

  • John Collins

    Of course a majority of Protestants vote for a Party one of once said ‘ALL Catholics should be incinerated’, whose long time leader marched up and down hillsides leading his armed followers in an obviously peaceful gesture and one of whose most prominent members conducted the burial service for Billy Wright

  • John Collins

    Wrong utterly wrong. By his own admission he hated the Irish most of all, followed by the Scottish speaking of whom he said he was delighted there was less of them as they would all over the English and their rights if they had the power to do so.
    You really should not make up your own facts.

  • John Collins

    He wrote a very self serving account of his time in Ireland. As an indication of his own interest in justice he described how he had two of his soldiers executed for killing an old lady’s two hens shortly after arriving in Ireland. Yet while he was in the course of negotiations for the surrender of the town of Wexford some of his troops, according to him, cut loose without his permission and murdered hundreds of the inhabitants without respect to age or sex. Yet this wonderful proponent of justice took absolutely no action to discipline any of his troops who had committed this atrocity. If you were a Roundhead you could be executed for killing a few hens but you could murder as many defenseless Catholics as you like.
    No wonder Winston Churchill, who was not a card carrying member of the IRA, referred to ‘the curse of Cromwell’

  • Pasty2012

    This Bill is nothing less than an attempt to divide and conquer the Nationalist people and to turn back the clock. Elliott is attempting to get the SDLP to back a Bill which would allow Unionists to remove ALL Funding from Nationalist sports clubs named after anyone that Unionists to deem as a terrorist, i.e. Patrick Pearse GAC, Casement Park etc. All Nationalist clubs would have to be renamed or be denied funding from the public purse just as in the days of old when Unionists ruled. At the same time Unionists will be able to name any club or group after anyone that terrorised the Nationalist people as those who were in collusion with the British Forces were given immunity from prosecution and most were rewarded with Knighthoods.
    The Unionist councilors have asked for the proposed new bridge at Narrow Water to called after the Para’s and this could happen under Elliott’s Bill.
    Should the SDLP fail to come out and state they will oppose the Bill then Nationalists must deny them the right to represent them.