10 February 2017
DUP MLA Christopher Stalford has said that whilst Michelle O’Neill has said the Secretary of State should not have a role in negotiations after the election her party appears to be preparing for James Brokenshire and other Conservative Ministers to take all decisions relating to Northern Ireland by returning to Direct Rule.
He said, “Firstly Sinn Fein have attempted to dictate who the leader of unionism should be and now Michelle O’Neill presumes to tell the Secretary of State that he should have no role in talks.
It is ironic that whilst making such a statement, her Party’s recent comments, including the letter to party leaders on health service funding indicates that Sinn Fein is anticipating a return to Direct Rule after the election. Perhaps Michelle O’Neill could explain why she demands the Secretary of State has no role in talks, but appears prepared to hand full decision making power in Northern Ireland to James Brokenshire and his Conservative Party colleagues.
Sinn Fein’s growing list of pre-election demands exposes their increasingly irresponsible approach. Having forced an unnecessary election, it is incumbent upon Michelle O’Neill to outline her post-election vision for Northern Ireland.”