Sinn Fein’s ludicrous attempts to force their own way by issuing threats and running to Dublin and London will not work. Mr. Dodds said it was time for Sinn Fein to accept the political reality that the DUP has made no commitment to the devolution of policing and justice powers until such time as the Unionist community was confident to allow the same to occur. Speaking today the DUP Deputy Leader said:
“It is regrettable that some people in Sinn Fein seem to be labouring under the illusion that if they repeat a lie often enough it will become a reality. They are mistaken. The Democratic Unionist Party made no commitment whatsoever to assent to the devolution of policing and justice powers by any date. Any commitments that were given by the Government to Sinn Fein are a matter for the Government, but the DUP made the situation perfectly clear before we left St Andrews, that we had not agreed to any dates for the transfer of powers. The central component of devolving these sensitive powers to Stormont is sufficient community confidence in the Unionist community to support such a move. The triple lock we secured on this issue stands.
The recent petulant behaviour of Sinn Fein raises serious questions about community confidence. Does Gerry Adams or his friend from the Irish Republic seriously believe that threats to destabilise the transaction of Executive business will assist in boosting confidence in the unionist community? It is entirely counter productive.
The DUP has said that we are willing to engage with all parties on a range of issues but we are not in the business of delivering on a republican agenda. And Sinn Fein need to know we will not allow the good governance of Northern Ireland to be held to ransom by a party trying to deliver some party political shopping list.
As Ministers in the Executive we are there to provide good governance for the people of Northern Ireland. The Ministerial Code details the legally binding obligations which all members of the Executive have to abide by. Sinn Fein need to realise that by engaging in, what boils down to, childish tantrums they are actually eroding the same confidence which is necessary for the devolution of policing and justice powers.”