Belfast Telegraph

McElduff steps down to become officer of Crown

By Donna Deeney

The resignation of Barry McElduff as an MP makes him the third Sinn Fein MP to step down from the House of Commons since 2011.

The West Tyrone MP's resignation is also not as straightforward as he might wish, and the republican stalwart is unlikely to welcome a process that labels him an officer of the Crown.

According to legislation, a sitting MP - even if they are abstentionist - who wishes to quit must ask to be appointed to an "office of profit under the Crown" - a role which disqualifies them as an MP.

Two offices are specified for this purpose - Crown Steward and Bailiff of the Chiltern Hundreds, or the Manor of Northstead.

Both Gerry Adams - who quit to stand in the 2011 Irish election - and the late Martin McGuinness, who had been 'double jobbing' at Stormont, were appointed Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead.

While they denied accepting the position, opponents delighted in noting that taking the Crown office is a requirement when quitting the Commons.

Belfast Telegraph

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