I note councillor McAllister has written complaining (‘Councillor McGimpsey’s time would be better spent helping Alliance combat secrecy in local government’, Letters, October 22) about my recent platform post concerning SF.
Needless to say, she shows no interest in my criticisms of SF and the Republican movement but rushes in the defend Alliance’s close working relationship with SF.
‘Methinks the lady doth protest too much’.
In fairness, since I first drew the attention of voters to this issue, that party are a lot more circumspect.
Gone are the days when, before key votes in council, Michael Long, Alliance group leader, would cross the chamber and have a private conference with the SF group leader.
Thereafter Alliance would vote in union with SF.
But the key point remains that councillor McAllister expresses no view or real criticism concerning SF. This should surprise no-one. My reference to Alliance was an aside and not part of the main thrust of my piece. Rather, her letter is an attack on the Ulster Unionists who she appears to view as her traditional enemies.
In many ways her letter proves my point. Alliance are rapidly evolving from small ‘u’ Unionist to small ‘sf’ Sinn Fein.
Councillor McAllister speaks of apologies. Well might she so do. Her attack on the integrity of members of our planning committee led to her being instructed to apologise to us all by the Local Government Auditor.
In the meantime, the UUP in Belfast City Hall will continue to represent the people of Belfast.
We normally view Alliance as a distraction.
This is a view which may well be the verdict of the voters next May.
Alderman Chris McGimpsey, Lisnasharragh, Belfast