UUP select Beattie and Dobson for one of tightest Assembly races

Jo-Anne Dobson
Jo-Anne Dobson

The Ulster Unionists have selected sitting MLAs Doug Beattie and Jo-Anne Dobson as their candidates for the Assembly election in Upper Bann.

Mr Beattie, first elected in May, said he would once again be “standing with pride” for the constituency while Mrs Dobson said she was committed to “focus on issues that matter”.

Doug Beattie

Doug Beattie

In what promises to be one of the most eagerly awaited election fights in Northern Ireland, the DUP have yet to name their second candidate to run alongside Carla Lockhart.

Sydney Anderson, the veteran MLA, has yet to confirm his candidature, with Diane Dodds, Johnny Buckley and Darry Causby amongst those rumoured to be in the frame.

Mr Beattie said: “I have always said that after a long military career it was my desire to serve my community and I have proudly done so both as a local councillor and in the last eight months at the Northern Ireland Assembly.

“It is once again with pride that I stand for the Northern Ireland Assembly alongside my colleague Jo-Anne Dobson having been confirmed as the Ulster Unionist candidates to fight the Upper Bann constituency.

“This election, triggered as it was by arrogance and incompetency of two political parties once again affords me the opportunity to offer the Upper Bann electorate a set of simple values and standards that form the backbone of my beliefs; loyalty, integrity, discipline, courage, selfless commitment and above all respect for others.

“I pledge to continue to work tirelessly for all communities in Upper Bann without favour and I hope they will play their part come the election on March 2 and vote Ulster Unionist.”

Mrs Dobson said: “My commitment to positive delivery and to continue to work hard is not a political one, it is a personal commitment. To focus on the issues that matter – on jobs, improving our health service and ensuring that our young children get the best possible start in life.

“It is both an honour and a privilege to serve the people of Upper Bann as their MLA - a constituency in which I grew up, live and work – my home.

“I am delighted to be confirmed by my party to stand alongside Doug Beattie MC to offer the people of Upper Bann continued hard work and delivery and once again thank all those who continually put their trust in me to work on their and their family’s behalves, whatever the issue.

“Working alongside my Ulster Unionist colleagues in Europe, at Westminster and in local Council we deliver an effective and successful constituency service to everyone in Upper Bann.

“I have maintained a consistent work record and renew my pledge that if re-elected to the Assembly I continue that proud record of doing what’s right for Northern Ireland.”