7 June 2007 Edition

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SDLP/UUP deal denies Sinn Féin mayor position

Sinn Féin’s Paul Maskey has described the SDLP deal with unionists to deny Sinn Féin the Mayoral office in Belfast City Council as “an absolute disgrace”.
Councillor Maskey accused the SDLP of engineering two terms as Deputy Mayor and one as Mayor by abandoning the agreed system of rotating the leadership positions between parties.
“First the SDLP did a deal with the DUP and now they’ve done a deal with the UUP, solely to keep Sinn Féin out of the top jobs in this council,” said Maskey.
“The decision lies at the behest of the SDLP. We met with the SDLP over many weeks to discuss the position of mayor in Belfast Council but the SDLP cut a deal with the UUP at the last minute,” said Maskey.
The SDLP’s Bernie Kelly was elected Deputy Mayor with support from the UUP and some members of the DUP, while UUP Councillor Jim Rodgers was elected Mayor.
Meanwhile, in Ballymena council, the SDLP secured the position of Deputy Mayor by cutting a deal with the DUP.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1

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