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Evidence for the Opposition

Saturday's Belfast Telegraph quotes Sinn Fein's Gerry Kelly exhorting me to "put up or shut up" regarding my party's call for an official Opposition at Stormont (News, September 3).

No party can magic an official Opposition into existence, rather the Secretary of State must be persuaded of the merit of the change and that process begins in the Assembly and Executive Review Committee.

Sinn Fein has three members on that committee. They will have heard me promote the idea of an official Opposition both verbally and in an official paper.

So I have 'put up' and, while I would not suggest Gerry Kelly should do the shutting up, I would not argue if his next comment is better informed by the evidence.

MIKE NESBITT (UUP)

MLA for Strangford

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