DUP as much to blame as SF says, Baroness Paisley

Posted By: February 23, 2018

Suzanne McGonagle. Irish News. Belfast. Friday, February 23, 2018

The widow of the late First Minister Ian Paisley said she believes the DUP are as much to blame for the current political stalemate as Sinn Féin.

Baroness Eileen Paisley has urged politicians to cut out the “nonsense and lies and start anew.”

The wife of the late DUP leader also suggested there would be no political impasse if her husband and the late deputy First minister Martin McGuinness were in power.

“If they had followed the example that the late Martin McGuinness and my husband set for them, this would not have happened,” she said.

“They would not have got into this mess in the first place.”

Baroness Paisley also said the DUP needed to accept responsibility for the energy scheme that had led to the collapse of government and said party leader Arlene Foster should have stepped aside when the RHI scandal broke.

The DUP leader was the minister in charge of the department that ran the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.

She refused to stand aside while an investigation was carried out and Mr. McGuinness resigned in protest at the DUP’s handling of the botched scheme.

The two main political parties have been in negotiations to end the 13-month stalemate at Stormont, but the latest negotiations broke down again last week over a proposed Irish language act.

“If you are a minister and someone in your department is wrong, the buck stops at your desk,” Baroness Paisley told BBC Radio Foyle.

“You have got to do what is right and stand down from your position until the matter is sorted out.

“If that had been done at the beginning, there would have been a very different situation than the one we are in at the minute. We would not be in the mess we are in.”

Baroness Paisley also said politicians were “hiding from the truth,” and people in Northern Ireland needed “proper


She added that she did not see the need for a stand-alone Irish language act.