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Extracts from speech by Jim Allister to TUV Annual Conference, (28 November 2015)

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Text: Jim Allister ... Page compiled: Martin Melaugh

Extracts from speech by Jim Allister, then Leader of the Traditonal Unionist Voice (TUV), to the TUV Annual Conference, Belfast, (28 November 2015)


"Events since we last met have comprehensively vindicated and validated the TUV analysis and position.

Who was it consistently challenged the convenient contention that IRA decommissioning was complete? TUV
Who was it derided the pretence that the IRA had disbanded. TUV
Who was it dared to say the IRA Army Council was still there? TUV
Who was it talked about continuing IRA criminal activity? TUV.

And who was it perpetuated the myth that all was well, the IRA was gone, the Army Council was a thing of the past? The DUP.
Remember the dishonest pretence over the devolving of policing and justice? Now, it turns out TUV was right all along and policing and justice was devolved to a terrorist-inclusive executive with a Sinn Fein controlled by the IRA Army Council.

This is what the independent panel says…..

DUP made careers and power out of pulverising David Trimble over his weakness. In contrast they boasted of their virility in putting manners on republicanism. In their 2007 manifesto they boasted “We have successfully renegotiated the Belfast Agreement, and required republicans to give up their weapons and all paramilitary and criminal activity before they could enter government” and for good measure they claimed to have ensured Sinn Fein could be excluded if they didn’t live up to these standards.

Now we know their partners still have guns, their IRA can still kill and its army council calls the shots. And all macho man Gregory Campbell can plaintively tell Nolan is “we can’t get them out”! Last year he was worried about yoghurt; this year he’s swallowing murder.

Its back to the bad old days of a still armed, still killing IRA controlling Sinn Fein in government. And who has taken us there? The DUP. Little wonder Sinn Fein MLAs gave Peter Robinson a standing ovation, didn’t he let them keep their Army Council in Government. They have reason to be grateful to him. What a legacy for the man who once said the only cabinet the IRA should be in is one with brass handles!

I see Martin McGuinness is going to take him fishing. Better than shooting, I suppose.

But what of the Fresh Start. As with everything Sinn Fein and the DUP do, a trade off, but, this time a trade off in climbdowns. Sinn Fein climbed down spectacularly on welfare and the DUP shamelessly in murder ……

Sadly DUP toadying to Sinn Fein is nothing new. This year we reaped what they sowed in electing a Sinn Fein Speaker as he surgically removed the National Anthem as an integral part of the Stormont Remembrance Service. But, then, he hadn’t reckoned with Sammy Morrison….. TUV leads where others follow.

And unlike some we’ve no apology to make to an IRA commander for honouring Her Majesty at a remembrance service, particularly recalling what his IRA did in Enniskillen……..

TUV’s positive vision: liberation at home and abroad. Liberation at home from the shackles of failed mandatory coalition and liberation for our nation from the chains of the EU – delighted to have Kate Hoey MP addressing us later ……

What a catastrophic failure Sinn Fein/DUP rule has been. Based not on cogent programme for government but self-serving carve up.

Take our economy. Manufacturing in crisis, epitomised by the end of Michelin, driven by exorbitant energy costs. And what does our hopeless, out of his depth DETI minister say, “Don’t let anyone tell you that manufacturing in Northern Ireland is in a difficult position.” Eye on the ball, instead of eye on the camera would serve some ministers better. Yesterday we had shameful slap in the face for Wrightbus when DRD awarded 30 bus contract to Belgium firm.

As for energy, this executive has pursued an all-Ireland centric policy that has widened the gulf between NI prices and GB prices as we align with higher ROI prices; meanwhile our vital Moyle interconnector is running at half capacity, at best, and DETI prioritises the most expensive, highly subsidised electricity of all, that produced by wind. Windbags and wind farms, neither are doing the business.

Money is tight, yet this executive prioritises benefits over jobs, education and health by creaming off £585m from the block grant to facilitate Sinn Fein’s welfare demands.
Budgets are stretched but not so stretched, it seems, that Mervyn Storey can’t help fund the Outburst Queer Arts Festival to stage an offensive and blasphemous play.

Meanwhile in health waiting lists are again out of control, money is running out, but in Stormont itself greed and squander are alive and well.

Special Advisers:
When I brought legislation to curb the number and excessive salaries of Special Advisers (SpAds), the DUP, though boycotting debates on waiting lists, cancer and autism, rushed back into the chamber to join with Sinn Fein to block it. So, the joint First Ministers continue to have 8 SpAds – the same as for the entirety of the Welsh Government – with several paid £92,000 pa plus benefits. With 19 SpAds costing over £2m, the annual cost of each is £106,500!

Jobs for the Boys/Girls:
The Emma Pengelly saga speaks volumes about the DUP:-
This £92,000 per annum Special Adviser collected a golden handshake of £46,000 (of which £30,000 was tax free) when she quit as a SPAD to be co-opted as a MLA; 3 weeks later she was appointed by Peter Robinson as his Junior minister. Though returning to work in the same department she held onto the publicly funded £46,000 handout. Such is the world of Stormont!

Last year (2014/15) Stormont departments and their arms length bodies have spent £1.8m on wining and dining. £35,000 per week
You the taxpayer have spent over £100,000 on coffee, scones and fruit platters for MLAs at committees, as well as providing free mints in the chamber!

Spin doctors:
The Stormont Executive has 161 spin doctors, costing over £5m every year, to try and convince you that their misgovernment is good for you. The joint First Ministers with 454 staff (2014/15) have more staff than Downing Street ???

Stormont ministers spent £400,000 of your money on photographers so that you can admire their every move!

In the upcoming election TUV will be making this greed and squander an issue, as well as demonstrating the success of the TUV thorn in the side of Sinn Fein/DUP misrule. But above all we will lay out our positive vision of voluntary coalition and vibrant Opposition as the path to durable devolution and the means whereby the people are liberated and empowered to change their government and exercise the worldwide right to vote a party out of government. We refuse to be the second and third class democrats in the western world denied these basic rights. That is the fresh start we need, not the tired old failure of mandatory coalition dressed up in the same old rags of failure.

TUV is not only the authentic voice of opposition to the tawdry regime in Stormont, we are the trailblazers for democratising Stormont.

TUV will ensure the voters have that alternative and all who proclaim themselves unhappy with the failures of Stormont will have the chance to prove it by voting for the party of positive change.

You get what you vote for. The choice is more of the same failure, the same carve up, the same repeat crises, the same excuses, or, a new vision, a new start, a politics of principle, not expediency. You’ve seen what one determined TUV voice can do. Think what we could do with the multiple MLAs.

Q to every voter: are you happy with what you’ve got? If not commit today to do something about it on 5 May. You’ll be heard loudest and best by voting TUV. That is the vote that declares enough is enough. The real alternative.

Last year Henry Reilly – whom we’re delighted has come to strengthen our team – and I had 100,000 votes between us. Those 100,000 voters can guarantee Stormont will never be the same again by voting TUV next May. It can be done. Let’s do it."




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