Source: Traditional Unionist Voice – Northern Ireland
Responding to Sir Jeffrey Donaldson’s comments to the House of Lords’ Constitution Committee about mandatory coalition TUV party chairman and East Londonderry representative Jordan Armstrong said:
“Some might think that having taken eight months to catch up with TUV on the Protocol the DUP run the risk of looking like slow learners but this is nothing to their attitude to mandatory collation. Today Sir Jeffrey has told the House of Lords’ Constitution Committee that he wants to end mandatory coalition “within the medium to long term”.
“I commend Sir Jeffrey for spending so much time reading up on TUV policy since the last Belfast Telegraph poll. It has been a founding principle of TUV to scrap mandatory coalition. TUV has correctly identified mandatory coalition as the key flaw in the Belfast Agreement.
“One cannot but help feel it is odd that in NONE of the countless rounds of crisis talks, in none of the fresh starts or new approach deals – all of which were announced with great fanfare – did the DUP ever seriously attempt to address this core issue.
“Even when they held the balance of power at Westminster – at a point when Sinn Fein was graphically highlighting that a government which must include all major parties cannot work by keeping Stormont down – the DUP did nothing to move from the system which requires a party which doesn’t even want Northern Ireland to exist to have seats in its government as of right.
“The electioneering has well and truly started when the party which has operated mandatory coalition with Sinn Fein since 2007 suddenly tries to pretend that it wants to abandon that system!
“In truth, Sir Jeffrey’s comments serve to highlight that it is TUV which has captured the imagination of Unionist electorate and he is seriously trying to catch up. Whether it is the Protocol or power sharing with Sinn Fein/IRA people know that TUV is the real deal!”