Northern Ireland Politics 2017 – UKIP Conference Speech

 

Since the election on the 7th March this year the NI Assembly has met for 46 mins and to date it has cost the taxpayer, yes that’s you and I, £6 million to cover MLAs’ salaries and expenses. No provision has been made for an non-operative Assembly. In fact this week the Independent Financial Review Panel determined that they should receive an additional £500 now and a similar increase in 6 months time. Money well spent I hear you cry. If we had the equivalent in my Nottinghamshire County, NI would be governed by 80 County Councillors on approx £20k including expenses.

 

Meanwhile, there are cuts in care packages, waiting lists for hospital appointments are getting longer and Mental Health funding is curtailed. Road safety has always been a major issue in NI. Did you know that more people were killed due to road accidents than during the horrific unrest during the Troubles?

 

Excessive speed on rural roads, an investment in road expansions is urgently needed and potholes abound. A common phrase you can hear is; We used to drive on the left of the road. Now we drive on what is left of the road.

Over 25% are employed in the public sector, the highest region throughout the UK and young people not in Education, Employment or Training sits at approx. 20%. Job losses are announced far too frequently and this week the manufacturing sector in East Belfast has been dealt a significant blow.

 

The names of the Parties may be different but many people vote not for a party, but to ensure that the “other side” don’t get elected. It’s politics of fear and in the NI case it’s largely down to tribal voting patterns on constitutional matters. That’s why I joined UKIP in NI. It offered a non-sectarian Unionist alternative with a UK National party who believe that Direct Democracy through Referendums should resolve issues when politicians cannot agree.

 

The latest stumbling block preventing a return to the Assembly is the demand from Sein Fein for a standalone Irish Language Act.

The Irish language received official recognition and funding under the 1998 Good Friday Agreement and for 20 years in Government SF seemed content to channel their efforts through the Irish medium education sector. There certainly hasn’t been desire to legislate for a bilingual public sector with preferential recruitment of Irish speakers. According to the 2011 census, only 4,045 people claimed Irish as their main language.

 

Language should threaten no one – however when language is used as a cultural weapon by political republicanism it clearly becomes a threat to British identity. Stormont has invested £171m in the past five years to promote the Irish language. However, SF has driven more people away from ever cultivating a genuine interest in the Irish language than any of these publicly funded incentives can ever hope to attract. Any legislation, no matter what it’s called or how its packaged, which underpins the Irish language in a legal framework will have massive implications for local government, the courts, the civil service, schools and everyday life in Northern Ireland. Legislative intervention will be used as an employment driver for Irish speakers and will open-up the potential for endless legal challenges on a range of related issues.

 

The parochial Unionist Parties wish to promote Ulster Scots and Nationalists advocate the Irish language. Maybe it’s time to discover the common language spoken throughout the North of Ireland for centuries, Ulster Gaelic. NI politicians should be focussing on that which should unite society – the need to tackle waiting-lists, the crisis in school budgets, and the need to create new and better jobs

BREXIT BORDER

 

On 23rd June 2016 the electorate in the United Kingdom of GB and NI voted to leave the EU together. We are united on this matter. No ifs, No buts, No fudge. Leave means Leave. Northern Ireland is not for sale to remain in the Single Market and Customs Union as proposed by the EU. This crazy idea breaches the Belfast Agreement. Northern Ireland is British. Carving up the UK is not on the agenda, not an inch.

 

Relations between Ireland and the UK have never been better. Ties of language, family, free trade and free travel bind us together. We regard the Irish as our “Kith and Kin”. All of these ties precede the formation of the EU. Irish farmers and small businesses export €1 billion with the UK every week. So you can see that it’s mutually beneficial for this situation to continue. Following the 2009-12 boom and bust in Ireland’s economy it was the UK who rose to the occasion with an offer of an interest free loan. The EU’s response, a € 64 billion Franco – German bank debt imposed on the Irish taxpayer.

 

100 years on from Ireland’s Independence we voted to regain our Independence because we want to make our own laws, spend our own money, act in our interest and determine our own destiny. With Brexit, Ireland has an even greater financial incentive to leave the EU and agree a free trade agreement with the UK. What we are witnessing is the EU’s provocation by interfering in our good relations, fanning the flames of political violence over the Border issue. A recent EU commission ruling on Ireland’s corporation taxation rate has also come as a shock leaving multi-nationals watching Apple Computer’s appeal very closely on the billions the EU says it owes the Irish Government.  But we all know that the EU isn’t about freedom, it’s about enslavement of nations and peoples. You cannot be a sovereign, independent self-governing country while being a member of the EU. To paraphrase Patrick Pearce, “Ireland unfree from the EU shall never be at peace”. Is it now time for the people of Ireland to demand a Referendum to determine whether they want to remain a member of the political EU or be granted Special Status within the EU? Let’s hope commonsense prevails and that our good relationship will continue to flourish and maybe the people of Ireland will join us one day as members of the Commonwealth.

 

John Rees-Evans Visits Northern Ireland

John Rees-Evans gave an inspiring presentation to UKIP Northern Ireland members on Saturday.

He was able to devote a considerable amount of time to members questions over a wide range of subjects.

Even if JRE is not selected as leader of UKIP he will certainly be an excellent candidate for MP in an upcoming Westminster Election.

I would personally wish to thank JRE for making the effort to visit the members in Northern Ireland and perhaps apologise that he did not receive an appropriate Ulster welcome during the AGM which he also attended.

 Cyflymder Duw

Nuttall and McNarry welcome Cllr Bob Stoker to UKIP

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Nuttall tells people : take the same step into UKIP that former Lord Mayor Bob Stoker has taken

Paul Nuttall MEP, UKIP’s deputy leader, on one of his regular visits to Northern Ireland has welcomed Bob Stoker, the former Lord Mayor of Belfast into the ranks of UKIP.

“Bob Stoker is a first rate recruit to the ranks of UKIP. As a Councillor of many years standing and as a former Lord Mayor of Belfast, he brings massive experience in public service which will be of great value to the Party. Make no mistake about it, serious and experienced political figures are joining UKIP. The truth is out there – that UKIP is the party of the voter, the party of the people, the party that truly represents what people think. Bob is a great addition to UKIP and his dedicated record of serving the people and good judgement will be very welcome.”

“UKIP’s door is open – so people should come and join Bob in creating a people’s revolution in politics. Your old parties locally are as stale and self-interested as the old parties are across the water. We need to get them all out of office where they can, by their self-interest and selfishness, damage the lives of ordinary people. Come and join UKIP the people’s party now and help build a new country run in the interests of its people instead of the interests of a few political hacks.”

“Nigel Farage asked me to add his warm welcome to Bob and express his delight that Bob is joining the Northern Ireland team.”

David McNarry MLA, UKIP’s leader in Northern Ireland, said he was delighted to welcome Bob Stoker, the former Lord Mayor of Belfast into UKIP.

“Bob has a wealth of experience in local government, having risen to what might be regarded as the top position in local government in Northern Ireland as Lord Mayor of Belfast. Bob is known for his honesty and integrity, for his wisdom, hard work and political experience. He will be a great addition to the UKIP team in Northern Ireland. I have known Bob for a long time and am delighted that he has chosen to come over to UKIP. Like so many before him, not only is he is attracted personally to UKIP but he also sees that UKIP is connecting in a real way with ordinary voters, voicing their deep concerns. We are the party of the ordinary voter, the party that speaks up for people when others prefer to hide behind political correctness and ignore – and brush under the carpet – the very real problems that confront our society. I give Bob Stoker, a warm and sincere welcome into the ranks of UKIP today.”