Castle Barracks, Enniskillen: Security Breach

Oral Answers to Questions — Infrastructure – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 3:15 pm on 26th April 2021.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Rosemary Barton Rosemary Barton UUP 3:15 pm, 26th April 2021

T7. Mrs Barton asked the Minister for Infrastructure what investigations she has carried out following the breach of security between last Friday evening and last Saturday morning at Castle Barracks, Enniskillen, a section of which is occupied by her Department, which also controls the use of the flagpole. (AQT 1237/17-22)

Photo of Nichola Mallon Nichola Mallon Social Democratic and Labour Party

I thank the Member for her question. The Member is referring to an incident where a tricolour was put up on DFI property at the DVA. Action was taken very quickly by our facilities staff, and the flag was taken down.

Photo of Rosemary Barton Rosemary Barton UUP

It happened in an area of historical and architectural significance in Enniskillen. What added security will you put in place to ensure that there is no breach in future?

Photo of Nichola Mallon Nichola Mallon Social Democratic and Labour Party

I am not aware of an incident like that having taken place before, but I will ask my officials to look into it. It is important that we understand how it happened, and, if required, additional measures will be taken. I want to put on record my appreciation for DFI staff and their swift action in ensuring that things were taken down and normality was restored.

Photo of Colm Gildernew Colm Gildernew Sinn Féin

On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. Will the Speaker look at the language that was used by Mr Thomas Buchanan in the Chamber earlier in his question to the Minister? I have informed Mr Buchanan that I would be raising this point of order. During his question, Mr Buchanan referred to Members of this House advocating premeditated murder.

I believe, given the sensitivity of the subject, that that language is inaccurate, it is inappropriate and I believe that it could and will cause untold harm to people who are struggling with these situations and who are accessing services to which they are legally entitled.

Photo of Patsy McGlone Patsy McGlone Social Democratic and Labour Party 3:30 pm, 26th April 2021

I appreciate the Member raising that point. We are all responsible individually for the use of moderate and sensitive language within the Chamber and, indeed, without it. I will reflect on that, and pass it on to the Speaker for his deliberations. Thank you.

(Mr Deputy Speaker [Mr Beggs] in the Chair)