Friday, 10 July 2009

I fought the law and the law won….

WHEN it comes right down to it, there’s something about tangling with the law that evokes a deep concern within all: whether it be the law of the jungle or the long arm of the law, it makes everyone, deep inside, wonder if they’ve done something wrong.

Imagine then the feelings around the Executive table when the conversation finally came round to devolving policing and justice.

First Minister Peter Robinson must have had a nagging feeling deep inside that maybe he shouldn’t have mentioned the enabling legislation for devolving the powers.

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness must have had a similar feeling about nipping over to London without making sure that Robinson had booked an away day to see the PM on the same day.

And so, come Thursday, no paper outlining the enabling legislation, which would pave the way for devolving the law to Stormont, came before the seated members of Northern Ireland’s cabinet.

The DUP said that everyone would see a copy before the end of July. Sinn Féin duly huffed.
But, in a show of short-sightedness Sinn Féin Minister Conor Murphy wondered why legislation that had been agreed with both parties was not being unveiled.

Perhaps it would have been timely for Murphy to check his calendar. This weekend brings us to Orangefest. DUP MLAs are not going to don sashes and discuss the devolving of policing and justice powers around the embers of bonfires or at the field, after a long dander.

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