The latest crisis in Northern Ireland precipitated by the failure of Stormont’s governing coalition is totally ‘irresponsible' says the UKIP MLA David McNarry.
Speaking at the Northern Ireland Assembly he said;"The failure to get agreement on Welfare Reform is an unacceptable position for parties that willingly formed this mandatory coalition to be unable to voluntarily sustain their basic duties in government. That is both reprehensible and irresponsible.
"Keeping this cowboy coalition honest and accountable is fast becoming a waste of time. On days like today, it is painfully obvious that this five party Executive are proving themselves to be a failed entity. Is there a plan on the table today, or tomorrow?”
The crisis has been caused by the failure of the Assemblies governing parties to pass a welfare reform bill, which would bring Northern Ireland closer in line with the rest of the UK.
McNarry went on, “Are we in the territory of the unknown? Is it not the case that the only plan that is causing posturing and prevarication — the reform of welfare benefits, sent down for us to adopt — is one outside our creation and beyond our scope of authority? Irrespective of the genuine opposition shown here and elsewhere, these reforms have been adopted and are being implemented in every region throughout the United Kingdom except here.
"Is it not the case that, by resisting reforms in this dishonourable manner, we find ourselves in a House that continues to punish the very people each of us wants to protect?”
“The Queen’s Speech solidified the place of the Stormont House Agreement. However, given this welfare collapse, this poses a serious question: How will the writ in the Queen’s Speech be delivered? I am not asking people to save this place unless they truly believe that it can be made to work better and to improve on its value. I am, however, asking that we do not let down the people who believe in us, people who have come out to vote for the Assembly in sufficient numbers and trusted us to work for all, not least the most vulnerable in our society.
If that cannot be done — this Executive must admit to their failures, fold up and walk away. If that is how we are being asked to leave this House, shame on the Assembly and shame on those who would put the House in this position.”