Assembly Business: Withdrawal of Statement by Mr Roche

– in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 12:00 pm on 16th September 2002.

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Photo of Lord John Alderdice Lord John Alderdice Speaker 12:00 pm, 16th September 2002

Mr Roche has requested, and has been granted, an opportunity to withdraw a remark that he made during the anti-sectarianism debate on Tuesday 10 September 2002.

Photo of Mr Patrick Roche Mr Patrick Roche NIUP

In the debate on 10 September I referred to a named Member as a "convicted murderer". I now know that that statement was incorrect, and I withdraw the statement.

Photo of Lord John Alderdice Lord John Alderdice Speaker

I think that the statement referred to Mr Gerry Kelly. I ask Mr Kelly whether he wishes to accept the withdrawal.

Photo of Gerry Kelly Gerry Kelly Sinn Féin

I welcome the fact that the remark has been withdrawn. It is not the first time that Unionists have abused privilege. In the scheme of things, and considering the speed at which some Unionists are moving forward regarding dialogue, perhaps this is a small step forward.

Photo of Lord John Alderdice Lord John Alderdice Speaker

A good precedent has been established by other Members that, when a Member discovers that something that was said was incorrect, it is withdrawn on the Floor of the House. That is a good and proper way to behave.