Belfast Telegraph

Onus is on Assembly to show politics works, PUP chief tells party


A loyalist leader has said there is an onus on the Assembly to prove that politics works.

Former prisoner and one-time MLA Billy Hutchinson was speaking ahead of today's PUP conference, where he will use his speech to set out a vision for the party.

Interviewed by this newspaper, he asked: "Are we ready for peace?

"Can society accept we are part of the UK and accept the political principles of the UK – the things that apply elsewhere?"

His party's conference comes against the backdrop of the fallout over flags and marching – sparked by what Mr Hutchinson calls a republican "cultural war".

"Our vision is certainly placed within the UK," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

"How do we deal with 'de-Britification'?" he asked.

"Republicans need to accept where we are at."

The former city councillor and North Belfast MLA is leader of a party with political links to the UVF.

And, just 10 days ago, the PSNI revealed that the paramilitary group is currently the subject of an organised crime probe.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph