UUP leader Doug Beattie says his party will return to Executive but protocol concerns remain

UUP chief Doug Beattie mentioned the naming of Sinn Fein’s Michelle O’Neill as first minister doesn’t forestall his occasion from going again into the Executive.

peaking to the BBC’s Nolan radio programme, Mr Beattie mentioned his occasion first wants to grasp what’s being supplied within the programme for presidency earlier than making a choice.

He’s anticipated to satisfy Secretary of State Brandon Lewis on Monday as newly-elected MLAs collect at Stormont. Mr Lewis has nonetheless signalled he would take a again seat amidst a looming political disaster at Stormont.

The DUP has indicated that the occasion gained’t nominate a Deputy First Minister to serve alongside Michelle O’Neill whereas the Protocol problem stays unaddressed.

But Mr Beattie mentioned: “The DUP and Sinn Fein, in the event that they go into the Executive, they’re going to have a title however they’re going to be precisely the identical. Nothing has actually modified right here. We want to grasp what we will have from a programme of presidency.

“We are still working to get the Executive up and running again, we need the Executive up and running despite our differences, in order to provide for the people of Northern Ireland,” he mentioned.

Mr Beattie went on: “If we have now what we want to have the ability to assist the individuals of Northern Ireland, we’ll serve to try this. If we don’t, then opposition is the place that we are going to be. We must have a forward-looking programme for presidency that provides us a imaginative and prescient not only for 5 years however for 10 or 15, twenty years.

“The entire problem is the protocol, will we go into authorities if the protocol hasn’t been sorted – the protocol must be sorted -we have been saying this since 2019. But that will probably be finished via negotiation between the UK and EU.

“Therefore Northern Ireland has to have a say in that. We’ll solely have a say if we have now a authorities.”

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