Belfast Telegraph

UUP select replacement for drink-driving councillor Derek Hussey

Derek Hussey
Derek Hussey

The UUP has selected Andy McKane to replace disqualified councillor Derek Hussey on Derry City and Strabane District Council.

Mr Hussey was disqualified from serving as a councillor for 15 months after being convicted of drink-driving three times.    

A complaint was made to the Local Government Commissioner for Standards Office by two families whose loved ones were killed by drink drivers.

Mr McKane is from the Cranagh area and is current co-chairman of the Omagh and Fermanagh branch of Unison.

He has a background of over 30 years in mental health work for the NHS. 

Mr McKane said he was "deeply honoured" to represent the Derg area as he is "Castlederg born and bred".

"I have been active in the trade union movement for 15 years and am currently joint chair of my union’s Omagh and Fermanagh branch," he said.

“I look forward to representing the people of the Derg area and to making a contribution to the council."

UUP leader Robin Swann said that Mr McKane would bring his vast experience to public life.

“I would like to congratulate Andy McKane on his co-option as a councillor for the Derg electoral area. I am confident that Andy will be an excellent public representative and serve all the people of Castlederg and the surrounding area," Mr Swann said.

“He has a great deal of experience in serving the public in his working life and is ideally suited to the role of a public representative.”

Former Derg councillor Derek Hussey (70) was found to have breached the local government code of conduct for councillors, specifically a paragraph which says councillors "must not bring their position as a councillor, or their council, into disrepute".

The conviction related to an incident in September 2015 in which the alderman was involved in a crash in Castlederg.

Mr Hussey, who served as deputy mayor of Derry and Strabane last year, pleaded guilty and was convicted of driving with excess alcohol, driving without due care and consideration and failing to report an accident.

It was his third conviction in relation to drink-driving.

He was elected back into office in May, retaining his seat in Castlederg and his council disqualification began on July 16.

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