The DUP seem determined to enforce an “Exclusion” order on Sinn Fein
MP Jeffrey Donaldson (below centre)
flanked by Worshipful Master Sam Wilson and Orange Order Grand Master, Robert Saulters.
member of the same party and “Orange brotherhood” as infamous “Curry my Yoghurt” Campbell
told Radio 4’s Today Programme:
“We are going to move to exclude Sinn Fein from the government. We believe the people who should be punished here are the people who have done wrong . . . if the other parties are not prepared to support the exclusion of Sinn Fein then we will act unilaterally and if that means that we have a period in Northern Ireland where we don’t have a government until we resolve and sort out these issues then so be it.”
MP Nigel (brickbat) Dodds
reiterated that the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) would move to exclude Sinn Féin from the Northern Ireland Executive and be prepared to bring down Northern Ireland’s power-sharing government over claims the Provisional IRA still exists.
Query: So they say but what does this “Exclusion Order” actually mean?
If the Assembly resolves that a political party does not enjoy the confidence of the Assembly—
Query: the Assembly? Not just the DUP? or the UUP?
members of that party shall be excluded from holding office as Ministers or junior Ministers for such period of not less than six months, and not more than twelve months, beginning with the date of the resolution as the resolution may provide
[F5(3)The Assembly may, before a period of exclusion under subsection (2) [F6or section 30A(5)] comes to an end, by resolution extend it until the end of such period of not less than six months, and not more than twelve months, beginning with the date of the resolution as the resolution may provide.]
(4)A period of exclusion [F7under subsection (1) or (2)] shall come to an end if the Assembly—
(a)is dissolved; or
(b)resolves to bring the exclusion to an end.
Queries: Does this mean the Exclusion order might last for years? Using a 1 month on – 11 months off mechanism could it become permanent for a 5-year legislature?
How does this square with safeguards in the GFA/Belfast Agreement like the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) which neither the Assembly nor public bodies can infringe?
Query: Could an “exclusion order” be considered legal abuse? It might cause injustice and harm to physical, psychological and societal health
(5)A motion for a resolution under this section shall not be moved unless—
(a)it is supported by at least 30 members of the Assembly;
Comment: The DUP have the 30 members of the Northern Ireland Assembly necessary to table an exclusion motion
(b)it is moved by the First Minister and the deputy First Minister acting jointly;
Comment: hardly likely
(c)it is moved by the Presiding Officer in pursuance of a notice under subsection (6).
[F8(6)If the Secretary of State is of the opinion that the Assembly ought to consider a resolution under this section,
Comment: Hardly likely. London and Dublin invested decades of effort in constructing an assembly which they hoped would underpin the peace process with political foundations. Each has enough on its plate with other problems.
(8)A resolution under this section shall not be passed without cross-community support.
Queries: Could Sinn Féin block such a vote because its MLAs represent a clear majority of nationalists/republicans in the Assembly?
In which case all the DUP/OO bluster about exclusion is just
Otherwise what does “cross-community support” mean? People on the streets? Signing petitions? Blocking Stormont? Digital voting? Strikes?
Comment: if anyone else wants to talk through his hat like Jeffrey and Nigel these models are available
“The days of exclusion and discrimination are over and they aren’t coming back.Sinn Féin will robustly defend our electoral mandate and we won’t allow a electoral contest within unionism to deflect us from representing the people from all over this island who elect us“.