Conservatives in NI Slam Hain Hypocrisy
The Conservative Party in Northern Ireland Criticise Northern Ireland Secretary for Standing for Labour Party Deputy Leadership While Party Blocks Organisation in Northern Ireland
[UKPRwire, Wed Sep 13 2006] Leading members of the Conservative Party in Northern Ireland today slammed Peter Hain, Northern Ireland Secretary, for making public his decision to stand for Deputy Leadership of the Labour Party. According to Jeffrey Peel, Vice Chair of the Conservative Area in NI, the decision beggars belief.
"Here we have a Northern Ireland Secretary of State putting himself up for election to Deputy Leadership of a Party that doesn't allow candidates to stand in that part of the UK that he rules like some colonial leader. Hain and his cronies have enacted legislation in Northern Ireland that would never have been countenanced in the rest of the UK - largely because the Party faces no electoral consequences here. The Northern Ireland Education Order, for example, will wreck a system of education that is far superior in terms of exam results and social inclusion than any other part of the UK. Yet Hain, despite having received not a single vote from anyone living here, proceeds with usual colonial arrogance. Now he is rubbing our noses in it by standing for Deputy Leadership when his Party doesn't even field candidates here."
Julian Robertson, who also serves on the NI Area Executive of the Conservatives agrees:
"In a speech last weekend our Secretary of State Peter Hain accused those in Northern Ireland who support the Union of suffering from a ‘lingering sense of insecurity’.
"Proclaiming the removal of Articles 2 & 3 from the Republic’s constitution as ‘hugely significant’ he goes on to say that the recognition of the principle of consent means ‘ the constitutional source of insecurity has been removed.’
"Mr Hain says those who support the Union ‘…have a valid, honourable and valued place in the UK.” And he continues, “being part of that Union now means being part of a forward-looking, dynamic economy and a society that has long ceased to be monocultural’. Fine words. But if he succeeds in becoming deputy Leader of the Labour Party, will he therefore follow the logic of his own words and allow Labour Party members in Northern Ireland access to this promised land? Will they be allowed to play a full and active part in the politics of their country? Will he back the fielding of Labour Party candidates in Northern Ireland to allow normal politics to develop?
"Or does he prefer to treat us with disdain and keep Northern Irish people out of national politics, our noses pressed against the window looking in at this forward looking dynamic society?
"This master of spin paints a rosy picture but when we wish to take him up on his offer we find “No Irish need apply” is still the rule.