Corruption cover-up at Stormont?

By Diane Williams

Nelson+McCauslandThe Social Development Committee at Stormont is currently holding an inquiry into allegations of wrongful political interference in the Housing Executive. The allegations arose from a BBC NI Spotlight programme on 3 July 2013.

At a meeting on 14 November, a senior civil servant admitted that he had been told to mislead the Assembly Committee about a meeting Minister McCausland had about a contract for double glazing.

Mr McCausland and other officials had the meeting with Turkington Holdings in April 2012. When the senior civil servant had to write to the Social Development Committee about that meeting, he was then told by the Minister’s private office to change the reference to Turkington Holdings to the Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF), as well as Fusion 21 – a procurement body that was not present.

At the same meeting, Jim Allister reported that when he ran for election to the EU Parliament in 2004, Turkingtons provided vans to the DUP for use in the campaign.

Once again this shows the cozy relationship between the political establishment and business. This is only the start of the inquiry and it will be interesting to see what other dead bodies are going to fall out the closet.

It is not the first time either that issues have come to light about how Ministers award contracts to businesses, without following the official tender process procedures. Earlier this week, criticisms were raised about the tender process for the Lyric Theatre. The Public Accounts Committee report found that the process was significantly flawed and failed to adhere to principles of good practice, leaving a strong impression that the outcome had been rigged and manipulated. The Assembly Executive’s policy of outsourcing and privatisation of public services is designed to put profits first, at the expense of working class people. The political parties in Stormont should be made disclose where they get their funding from so that ordinary people can see what business interests are at play.

Previous Article

Repressive methods of state must be opposed

Next Article

Forbes Goes Mad About Socialist Success

Related Posts
Read More

TGI Fridays strike latest in young workers’ struggles

Young and precarious workers across Britain and Ireland are standing up and saying, ‘enough is enough’. Small but successful campaigns, such as the McStrike and the #BetterThanZero initiative, have rebuilt confidence and have proved that, by joining a union and actively organising, we can win. Northern Ireland has not been left behind in this international rise in trade union consciousness. Workers here too, are organising. Following a successful launch of the Unite Hospitality NI campaign, young people from a wide range of workplaces are getting together and planning how they are going to fight for a better life and a better future.
Read More

Review: I, Daniel Blake

In 1966, Ken Loach shocked British audiences with his unflinchingly honest portrayal of poverty in the UK in Cathy Come Home. Now, fifty years on, Loach has once again put on a masterclass in socialist film making, in a film that shakes with a sort of quiet anger throughout.