Belfast Telegraph

Councillor's parting shot at TUV after joining UUP

By David Young

A councillor who last week resigned from Traditional Unionist Voice, claiming he was "tired of being a cheerleader for a one-man show", has joined the Ulster Unionists.

David Arthurs, who was elected to Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council as a TUV councillor in 2014, spent three days as an independent before announcing he had joined Mike Nesbitt's party.

"After thinking about my future over the weekend I am delighted to have joined my many friends and now colleagues in the Ulster Unionist Party. Like me, they share a passion to do what's right for Northern Ireland," he said.

"I have a close working relationship already with my 12 Ulster Unionist Party colleagues on Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council and look forward to working with Jim Bingham and Vera McWilliam to deliver results on the ground for the people of Ballyclare.

"Only the Ulster Unionist Party, under Mike Nesbitt's astute leadership, has the strength and the critical support to bring about the fundamental changes that our province so badly needs."

Reacting via social media to Mr Arthurs' decision, TUV leader Jim Allister said it had only been a few days since his former colleague had wanted to be a TUV Assembly candidate.

"What a difference a week makes? Last week seeking TUV Assembly nomination (rejected) and attacking UUP!" he tweeted.

Mr Arthurs' move means that the UUP now has 90 councillors across Northern Ireland.

UUP leader Mr Nesbitt said: "I am delighted to welcome David back to the Ulster Unionist Party and look forward to working with him as part of our growing team of elected representatives.

"We have critical momentum, not just in Ballyclare and South Antrim, but across Northern Ireland as people yearn for an alternative to the eight long years of DUP/Sinn Fein poor quality government."

Belfast Telegraph

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