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First Minister: Mike Nesbitt is a financial illiterate

By Noel McAdam

Published 30/06/2015

First Minister Peter Robinson appears to be recovering well from a heart attack
First Minister Peter Robinson appears to be recovering well from a heart attack

First Minister Peter Robinson has urged Ulster Unionist leader Mike Nesbitt to attend a crash course on "finance for dummies".

His attack came after Mr Nesbitt claimed almost half-a-billion pounds had been handed back by Stormont departments over the last four years to the Treasury in London.

Mr Robinson, a former Finance Minister, was responding to Mr Nesbitt's statement last week "which proved Mr Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness were unfit to govern".

The row escalated yesterday when Finance Minister Arlene Foster's department insisted no funding had been lost to the Executive.

Mr Robinson hit out: "Mike Nesbitt's financial illiteracy is quite breathtaking. What is more surprising is that he chooses to reveal it in a cack- handed attack on OFMDFM."

He said the only department that had run an overspend last year was the Department for Regional Development, whose minister is the UUP's Danny Kennedy.

And he said he has asked Mrs Foster to set up a course on finance for dummies "that Mr Nesbitt might consider taking".

"Mr Nesbitt should know that it is not OFMDFM, but individual departments that are responsible for managing their own budgets"

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