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DUP's two tribes

Scale of leader and deputy's political dynasties revealed

By David Gordon

The scale of the two family dynasties at the top of the Assembly's biggest political party was last night made public.

It is now known that five Paisleys hold political posts, while the family of leader-in-waiting Peter Robinson go one better with six - including Mr Robinson and his MP wife.



Details released by the DUP show that Mr Robinson employs his son and a daughter in full time roles from the staffing expenses made available to politicians.



His wife Iris meanwhile also employs one of their sons in a full time capacity and a daughter-in- law part-time.



DUP leader Ian Paisley has two daughters on his payroll as full-time employees, while his wife Baroness Paisley represents the party in the House of Lords.



Their son Ian Jnr is paid £9,000-£11,000 per year as a parliamentary researcher for his father.



That's on top of his own position as MLA, and the Stormont Ministerial post he will shortly be vacating after he announced his resignation this week.



The Commons-related pay received by Ian Jnr is to be the subject of a preliminary inquiry by the Parliamentary Standards Commissioner.



In total, the DUP announced that 19 of its elected politicians are employing family members.



The list involves 27 relatives in an overall party staff team of 136, it stated.



DUP Assembly chief whip Lord Morrow said the employees cover more than 40 offices and "scores of satellite surgeries" across Northern Ireland.



He added: "Whilst there has been much discussion about MLAs who employ relatives, it must be noted that the focus should be on whether the employee is effectively doing the work for which they are paid.



"The Democratic Unionist Party provides an unrivalled constituency service. The performance of these offices is monitored by our party centrally."



The DUP was the last of the main Stormont parties to reveal information on family links.



Relative values: the DUP list in full



Gregory Campbell - wife (full time), employs seven in total



Nigel Dodds - wife (full time) and son (part time), employs seven in total



Jeffrey Donaldson - wife (part time), employs eight in total



William Hay - son-in-law (full time), employs three in total



William Irwin - daughter (full time), employs two in total



Nelson McCausland - nephew (part time), employs three in total



Ian McCrea - wife (part time), employs four in total



William McCrea - son (full time) and daughter (full time), employs six in total



Michelle McIlveen - brother (full time), employs three in total



Adrian McQuillan - sister-in-law (full time), employs three in total



Maurice Morrow - sister-in-law (full time), employs three in total



Robin Newton - wife (full time) and son (part time), employs two in total



Dr Ian Paisley - son (part time) and two daughters (full time), employs seven in total



Edwin Poots - wife (part-time)



George Robinson - son (full time) and nephew (part time), employs four in total



Iris Robinson - son (full time) and daughter-in-law (part time), employs six in total



Peter Robinson - son (full time) and daughter (full time), employs four in total



Jimmy Spratt - wife (part time), employs three in total



Jim Wells - daughter (part time), employs six in total

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