A GP has spoken out about how he and his colleagues are having to hand out food vouchers to patients, a Belfast paediatrician has concern that children may die because their parents can't afford to put the heating on and now, a charity says children are being failed. pic.twitter.com/YHJaBsl05m— BBC Newsline (@bbcnewsline) August 10, 2022
Category: FUCK THE DUP
Jeffrey Donaldson sends solidarity to low paid workers during ‘Double-Jobbing’ controversy
Jeffrey Donaldson pushed back today against widespread criticism of his attempts to ‘double job’. The MP for Lagan Valley intends to keep his role as an MP while also standing for election as an MLA at the Stormont Assembly. Many opponents have come out across the political spectrum to condemn the DUP proposal, which had […]Jeffrey Donaldson sends solidarity to low paid workers during ‘Double-Jobbing’ controversy
How to not do Politics: DUP Edition
Within the last few weeks Northern Ireland has had a constantly updating list of political drama (NI protocol drama, border poll drama, TUV gaining voters drama and concerns over NI’s covid vaccine uptake) to deal with. However, we now look back at those carefree weeks as some form of utopian dream, after this weeks political […]How to not do Politics: DUP Edition
Ian (Óg) Paisley fined over Ballymena fundraising dinner
For Fraud And Ulster
The fine is a sanction against the DUP man for accepting money from two Northern Ireland councils for attendance at a fundraising dinner.
The event was addressed by the senior Conservative Michael Gove.
Mid and East Antrim and Causeway Coast and Glens councils took tables at the dinner at Tullyglass hotel in Ballymena in September 2017, each paying £1,500.
The councils said the payments had been made to the hotel for attendance at a business related event.
However, the commission decided the dinner was a fundraiser and councils are not regarded as legally “permissible donors” for political parties.
It is understood the North Antrim MP has agreed to return the money to the councils and the £1,300 fine is in addition to that.
The fundraising dinner was not the first time Mr Paisley has been in trouble over financial matters.
In July 2018, MPs voted to suspend him for 30 sitting days.
It followed his failure to declare two family holidays paid for by the Sri Lankan government in 2013.
In 2014 Mr Paisley wrote to the prime minister to lobby against supporting a UN resolution on Sri Lanka over alleged human rights abuses.
By failing to declare his trips, Mr Paisley “breached the rule against paid advocacy”, a Westminster standards committee said.
In 2008, Mr Paisley resigned as a junior minister at the assembly following criticism over his links to developer Seymour Sweeney and allegations he lobbied on his behalf.
An ombudsman ruled there was no evidence to suggest he had broken assembly rules, but he stepped down, saying: “The criticism has been a distraction and has got in the way of the activities of this government and importantly it has gotten in the way of the activities of my political party.”
The Electoral Commission is the official watchdog, which regulates the funding of political parties in the UK.
It says the fine has been imposed due to Mr Paisley’s “failure to return donations from impermissible donors within 30 days of receiving them”.
A commission statement says the two variable monetary penalties totalling £1,300 have to be paid by 8 October 2020.
Philip McGuigan, Sinn Féin assembly member for North Antrim, said it was “frankly unacceptable that a local council used ratepayers’ money for what was essentially a party political fundraiser”.
“I called on the Electoral Commission to conduct an investigation into the matter at the time and welcome that has now been concluded,” he said.
“Local councils should represent everyone. It is equally unacceptable that the DUP consciously or otherwise failed to declare this donation.”
Mr Paisley took over as MP for his father’s former North Antrim constituency in 2010 and has subsequently been re-elected with large majorities.
With many thanks to: BBCNI and Mark Davenport Political Editor for the originalstory
NI council rejects barn application supported by Edwin Poots – because it ‘looks like a house’ | Belfast News Letter
MLA (member of the local assembly) denies driving charges
DUP MLA and Policing Board member Joanne Bunting has denied careless driving and leaving the scene of an accident (most probably drunk)
Bunting, with an address in Ards, was charged with driving carelessly on the Movilla Road in the town and three offences alleging that following an accident which caused an injury to another person, she failed to stop, remain and report her details to the police within a reasonable time.
None of the facts surrounding the offences were heard during the brief hearing and after her defence solicitor entered not guilty pleas to each of the offences, District Judge Mark Hamill adjourned the case to September 7th.
With many thanks to: The Irish News and the Belfast Telegraph for original story
Jim Wells defends comments labeling GAA ‘sectarian and republican’ – BelfastTelegraph.co.uk
DUP politicians told to repay profits from taxpayer-funded second homes
Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) defrauding the North of Ireland’s tax payers
The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) announced that 70 UK politicians have agreed to repay hundreds of thousands of pounds following negotiations.
The expenses watchdog moved to ban the use of Commons expenses to pay mortgage interest in May 2010, in the wake of public fury over “flipping” and other abuses.
However, transitional arrangements were put in place permitting MPs elected before 2010 to keep claiming the money up to last August – as long as they agreed to return any potential capital gain made from the rising value of London properties.
East Derry MP Gregory Campbell has agreed to return £61,403 for a property in London he still owns – the second-largest repayment to be made.
Fellow party members Sammy Wilson, William McCrea, Nigel Dodds, Jeffrey Donaldson and David Simpson have also struck deals to hand back profits:
Gregory Campbell (DUP, East Londonderry)
Total mortgage interest claimed £16,755.00
Total repayment due to IPSA £61,403.18
David Simpson (DUP, Upper Bann)
Total mortgage interest claimed £11,208.65
Total repayment due to IPSA £30,308.40
William McCrea (DUP, South Antrim)
Total mortgage interest claimed £6,929.91
Total repayment due to IPSA £29,793.60
Nigel Dodds (DUP, Belfast North)
Total mortgage interest claimed £25,434.16
Total repayment due to IPSA £19,507.76
Jeffrey Donaldson (DUP, Lagan Valley)
Total mortgage interest claimed £20,338.06
Total repayment due to IPSA £1,448.46
Sammy Wilson (DUP, East Antrim)
Total mortgage interest claimed £19,633.90
Total repayment due to IPSA £1,448.46
Some 71 Members of Parliament received around £1 million in allowances for mortgage interest during the period.
The properties were formally valued at the beginning and the end, and the MPs were given until November 30 to return a proportion of any gain.
Ipsa said it would consider a longer repayment schedule – possibly extending to 2015 – if returning cash quickly would “create hardship”.
But the process was delayed when a number of MPs signalled that they were considering a legal challenge on the grounds that the watchdog had overstepped its powers.
Repayment deals have now been struck with 70 of the MPs, with only Conservative MP Stewart Jackson’s case still to be settled. He has been asked to hand over £54,000 in relation to a property in his Peterborough constituency, but has disputed the amount calculated.
The largest repayment, of £81,446, has been returned by Tory MP for Clwyd West, David Jones.
Mr Campbell was implicated in the 2009 expenses scandal, when leaked files revealed he had made second-home claims of more than £77,000 over four years.
The DUP man had also claimed £11,500 in hotel bills between 2005 and 2006, before moving into his flat in London, and racked up £4,675 on furniture and appliances including TVs and a DVD player.
It is the second financial blow this week for Mr Campbell, who represents East Derry at both Westminster and Stormont.
Yesterday’s Queen’s Speech outlined the Government’s Northern Ireland Bill, which would ban him from “double-jobbing” as both MLA and MP.
Gregory Campbell said he backed the Government’s decision to “bring forward legislation on dual mandates”.
“As part of the new expenses system introduced at Westminster I sold a property which previously had been purchased. This sale has resulted in the taxpayer being some £60,000 better off,” he said.
“At no point neither I nor any of my colleagues queried or contested the figures put forward by IPSA.
“It is also welcome that the Government has finally moved to bring forward legislation on dual mandates. This is something the DUP has called for for some years now.
“Failure to reduce the number of MLAs however will mean extra cost to the public purse as the new scenario has absolutely no financial implication for myself as I do not receive any salary for my role as an MLA, which at the moment saves significant money from the public purse.”
With many thanks to the: Belfast Telegraph for the original story
The final journey of Óglach Bobby Storey RIP
Follow this link to find out more: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=3181231728623246&id=100002093504519&ref=bookmarks
The DUP and Ulster Unionists have missed numerous opportunities to point out that republican conduct made power sharing indefensible
Ben Lowry’s piece on the future of unionism has provoked a number of responses (‘After a grim 2019, unionism faces big challenges in 2020s’, Dec 28).
I agree that the North of Ireland becoming a more secular place is a problem — the loss of a sense of identity in a community which was once united by the Ulster Covenant, a document which drew on a shared history linking us back to Scotland and untimely back to a common appreciation of the Bible, is a problem.
However, it’s also worth considering the nature of the political process over the past 20 years.
Consider the decade of what is considered as stable devolution even before the current crisis.
After a short honeymoon period of Chuckle Brothers Dr Paisley and McGuinness we had a crisis over the devolution of policing and justice with Sinn Fein preventing the executive meeting for months.
There have been numerous occasions when unionists could have said republican conduct made power sharing with them morally indefensible.
One thinks of Robert McCartney, Paul Quinn, Kevin McGuigan and the Florida gunrunning. Or even the fact that just weeks ago the PSNI confirmed that the PIRA Army Council continues to oversee the entire republican movement and that they remain weapons and departments —
something most unionist parties were tellingly quiet about.
Yet in spite of all that there isn’t a suggestion from either the DUP or UUP that they would ever give up on Stormont.
Why? Because as far as they are concerned a system which requires power sharing with the PIRA’s political proxies — whose goal is to show that the North of Ireland is a failed political entity — is as good as it gets.
That being the case unionism will continue to be seen as the ‘problem’ when it comes to any political crisis republicans choose to engineer.
A younger generation which has grown up in a Northern Ireland where flying the flag of the United Kingdom is seen as at best as impolite and at worse a deliberate act of provocation rather than something they identify with will continue, in greater numbers, to vote for parties which are agnostic on the Union.
Certainly no one now would claim, as both the UUP and DUP have in the relatively recent past, that the Union is ‘stronger than ever’.
With many thanks to the: Belfast News Letter and Samuel Morrison, Traditional Unionist, Dromore, Co Down. For the original posting.
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