Were Unionists Happy with Kelly’s Whitewash Over Castlederg?

Admin —  March 11, 2014

Statement by TUV leader Jim Allister:

“The reports  signed off by the Standards and Privileges Committee whitewashing Kelly’s grossly offensive conduct at the Castlederg IRA parade is a slap in the face for all innocent victims of terror.

“People will be well used to MLAs being given a clean bill of health by the Committee when it is evident to any neutral observer that the MLA has a case to answer. However, what is particularly shocking about this report is that it appears to have been accepted without a murmur of  dissent from the Unionist members of the Standards and Privileges Committee.

“One of those who along with me complained about Kelly’s speech, Thomas Buchanan, released his letter to the Standards Commissioner on 12th August last year in which he said that Kelly’s “behaviour could represent a breach of five of the principles of the Code”.

“Is Mr Buchanan content that there is no record of either the chair of the Standards and Privileges Committee (Alastair Ross) or committee member Ian McCrea disagreeing with the report in the committee? The two other DUP members of the committee (Mervyn Storey and Paula Bradley) were not in attendance when the report was discussed.

“The Report’s contention that Kelly was not acting as an MLA when he made his infamous speech is a laughable fiction. Kelly has a profile because he is an MLA whose speech at Castlederg was carried on the website of his political party.

“Once again the Assembly has been brought into disrepute by the conduct of an MLA and once again the complaints system which is supposed to hold MLAs to account has done nothing other than further damage confidence in the Assembly and its members.”

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