Paddy Meehan – a former Communication Workers’ Union representative in HCL and the Socialist Party’s candidate for Laganbank and South Belfast in the upcoming elections – has called for the call centre firm’s books to be opened for inspection by workers facing job losses and attacks on their conditions.
Sinn Fein have been challenged to publically rule out the introduction of water charges after a senior member of the party called for separate water charges to be brought in after the May’s elections.
In an interview in today’s The Irish News, Paul Butler claimed Sinn Fein needed to start taking “hard decisions rather than populist decisions” in order to find extra funding and added “really the only place the Stormont executive can go is the area of water charging.”
The first Assembly to complete a full term has been criticised as being “a right-wing consensus between all the parties and has failed the needs of ordinary people.” Paddy Meehan of the Socialist Party claimed “The politicians in the Assembly have left nothing for workers and young people but a four year budget of £4 billion cuts and a return to mass unemployment.
There are reports that the ConDem government is considering cutting Corporation Tax rates in Northern Ireland. This follows ongoing demands from all the mainstream parties for a reduction in the current baseline rates of 28% for big businesses and 21% for those with a turnover of less than £300,000. The parties claim that this will enable Northern Ireland to compete with the Republic of Ireland in attracting investment (the rate in the South is 12.5%).