We, the Gildernew family, are making this statement to clarify and correct recent misleading press reports around the RHI scheme.
In September 2016, Michelle Gildernew informed the Public Accounts Committee (‘PAC’) that her brother had applied to the RHI domestic scheme.
This was before the RHI story gained traction in the press in December 2016.
Michelle declared this to the PAC in the interests of transparency and accountability.
Michelle’s brother has a log-burning stove in his living room.
To date, he has spent £406 on fuel and received £158 back from the RHI domestic scheme.
The fuel needed for the stove is kiln-dried wood blocks, which are much more expensive than ordinary firewood.
He has not profited from his involvement in the domestic scheme and has merely been able to recoup a proportion of his costs.
We as a family have been concerned about press reports stating that a brother of Michelle Gildernew’s is a recipient of “the scheme”, without clarifying that he is in the domestic scheme, as opposed to the controversial non-domestic scheme.
The implication is that we are as culpable as some people who would appear to have abused the non-domestic scheme in order to make a profit.
To conclude, we want to make it clear that we as a family have not profited in any way from this scheme.
We would request that the press stop using our involvement as a distraction, and desist from further misleading reporting.
We are currently taking legal advice about recent press reports.
The Gildernew family, Press statement by email