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Results 121–140 of 800 for speaker:Naomi Long in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates'

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members’ Business: Civil Service Recruitment (21 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I thank the Member for giving way, but I am afraid that there is a conflict in her stated position. One cannot accept the principle of merit-based appointments in all cases while at the same time talk about favouring positive discrimination. If merit-based appointment is believed in, the only thing that should matter is the quality of the person and not their background, which can be...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Culture, Arts and Leisure: Re-imaging Communities (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: 2. asked the Minister of Culture, Arts and Leisure for his assessment of the Re-imaging Communities programme.     (AQO 76/10)

Northern Ireland Assembly: Culture, Arts and Leisure: Re-imaging Communities (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I thank the Minister for his answer, which reflects the value of the projects. I declare my interest as a member of Belfast City Council, which was involved in the programme’s delivery. Given that it transforms not only physical places but the people in those places, is the Minister of a mind to further invest in this kind of vehicle for transformation? The programme has had a massive...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Will the Member give way?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: With respect to the Member’s point about the Executive’s failures on education and on a range of other matters, maybe the Member will clarify whether he would prefer those matters to be un-devolved and sent back to be dealt with at Westminster. Would his party prefer direct rule to devolution, because that is the natural outworking of what he has said? If he is saying that...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Perhaps the Member will clarify what his party leader was raging about in the newspapers when somebody uncovered the miraculous information that David Ford is not a unionist. He said that an Alliance Party Member holding the post of justice Minister would have serious implications because it would be unthinkable that a non-unionist should occupy that office. He was, in effect, hanging a “no...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: The general principle of the Bill is that policing and justice should be devolved to the Northern Ireland Assembly. I agree with the Bill on that point. The Alliance Party believes that it is important that that be done, for a number of reasons. Devolution is not complete. We are committed to seeing devolution completed, not because we are blind to the flaws of our devolved Administration,...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: That is undoubtedly true. Indeed, a realisation of the joined-up nature of devolution would help to restore public confidence in these institutions and make people feel that devolution has benefited them. Although it is easy and appropriate for us to hold Ministers to account week in and week out in the Assembly, little emphasis has been put by any party on defending the Assembly’s record....

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I thank Mr Kennedy for his intervention because it gives me an opportunity to address something that I was going to leave unaddressed. It is the question of whether the UUP’s concerns are genuine. If its concern is about timing, the content of this Bill is of no concern because there is no timetable in the Bill. If that concern were genuine, the party would let the Bill pass and resist its...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Despite Mr Kennedy’s patronising tone, I fully understand that, because I can read the legislation. The creation of expectation is as much down to the pantomime tomfoolery of some people who spoke about this Bill as it is down to anything that is included in the Bill. The Bill does not create a timetable for the devolution of policing and justice powers. Mr Kennedy said that this matter is...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I think it is now Mr Kennedy who does not understand, because I have not raised the issue of security of tenure. To be blunt, there would be no electoral damage to any of my colleagues if they were to be tossed out of their offices by the DUP and Sinn Féin for trying to be an Alliance Party Minister for policing and justice. Therefore, security of tenure would not particularly concern us....

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Yes; Mr Kennedy has again spoken from a sedentary position while enjoying his own joke very much, as he always does. He is always guaranteed at least one laugh: his own. However, the reality is —

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I have not met your wife, but she gets my sympathy. [Laughter.] I have to say that this issue makes me angry, because there can be misunderstandings about some of these things, and then there is the wilful taunting that adds nothing to the discussion and does not further the debate. Instead, it exposes the fact that some Members have treated today’s proceedings as a game, rather than a...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Will the Member give way?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: The Good Friday Agreement, which the Member’s party has trumpeted as its structures and mechanisms, contained a veto over the appointment of the First Minister and deputy First Minister. That had to be put to a cross-community vote. When that was removed at St Andrews, the SDLP, among other parties including the Alliance Party, believed that that was a retrograde step because it removed...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I thank the Member for giving way, and I apologise for not answering his other two points. I held off on answering those, because I indicated that I wanted to intervene on the specific issue of a veto. The Member’s last point raises some interesting questions. He suggested that political circumstances can change the approach that is taken. Up to this point in the debate, the SDLP has...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: If I am wrong, I will be quite happy to say so.

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (22 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: During the debate, some Members have talked about the agreement as though it were the end point of a process. Will the First Minister agree that the Good Friday Agreement was put in place so that we could facilitate further agreements and developments in this place that would be democratically challenged, just as is happening with today’s debate, so that we can further democracy and...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (29 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: Does the Member agree that an opportunity to study in more depth ways to levy separate water charges fairly and affordably has also been missed? The assumption was that, because the charges were being deferred, they would not be implemented. We could now be facing a situation in which they are implemented in what is not a fair, affordable and transparent way, despite the fact that there has...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Second Stage (29 Sep 2009)

Naomi Long: I concur with everything that my colleague said, and I will not repeat the points that he made. The Water and Sewerage Services (Amendment) Bill, if passed, will allow the Department for Regional Development to continue to fund water and sewerage services, and the Alliance Party has no objection to that. What is now termed “water and sewerage services” was for a long time called public...


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