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Ministers and their codes of behaviour

Published 20/09/2012

Touching as Alasdair McDonnell's concern for Nelson McCausland's alleged breach of the ministerial code is (News, September 18), I wonder if the SDLP leader will be setting down similar motions concerning other alleged breaches.

Only in June of this year, we learnt from an employment tribunal that then-DRD Minister Conor Murphy had engaged in sectarian discrimination when overlooking a Protestant candidate for chair of Northern Ireland Water.

Then, just this week, we learn that Education Minister John O'Dowd has been found to have made seven breaches of the ministerial appointments code.

Does Dr McDonnell believe that some purported breaches are more worthy of censure than others?

Or is it simply that the aforementioned allegations were committed by nationalists that makes them excusable?

The SDLP trying to prove that their tricolour is bigger than the Shinners's tricolour is unedifying at best. Perhaps a little consistency might be in order.

A D THOMPSON

Belfast

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