Belfast Telegraph

MP suspended over 'deceptive' claim

Nigel Dodds has been suspended from the House of Commons for the day after he accused Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers of giving a "deliberately deceptive" answer in the chamber.

The Deputy Leader of the Democratic Unionist Party was named by Speaker John Bercow after he refused three times to withdraw the claim he made in a point of order.

Mr Bercow said Mr Dodds was suspended from the Commons for the remainder of the day.

Raising a point of order, the MP for North Belfast said that when he had asked a question earlier to Ms Villiers during Northern Ireland Questions she had failed to address the issue of her powers to overrule the Parades Commission's decision to ban Orangemen from marching past a sectarian flashpoint which has been scene of serious rioting in previous years.

Mr Dodds said: "Earlier today at Northern Ireland questions, I raised an issue about what... (Ms Villiers) would be doing as a result of the outrageous and scandalous decision of the Parades Commission last night in Northern Ireland, which is causing enormous pain and tension to be rising in North Belfast and across the province and has the potential for severe trouble on our streets.

"In reply to my question (she) did not address the point of her powers on an application by the chief constable. I have to say that in my view that was deliberately deceptive and I think that was absolutely outrageous and will not go down well in terms of people back home.

"(She) has a responsibility to do something about the outrageous decision of the Parades Commission in Northern Ireland and unless she acts there will be difficulties ahead."


From Belfast Telegraph