Sinn Fein received more than £34,000 in private donations in the third quarter of this year – more than 40% of all donations made to political parties in Northern Ireland.
Second to Sinn Fein’s £34,200 on the Electoral Commission list is the little-known pro-EU ‘Both Unions Party’.
The BUP was registered with the Electoral Commission just days before it was announced that Ian Paisley would be the subject of a parliamentary recall petition – as a result of his undeclared holidays at the expense of the Sri Lankan government. The party received £16,810.
The Conservatives were third in the table with private donations of £10,000, ahead of Alliance with £7,500 and the £2,000 donated to People Before Profit (PBP). None of the unionist parties, the Greens or the SDLP declared any private donations.
Most parties, with the exception of the Conservatives, Both Unions Party and PBP, also received money from the public purse during the quarter.
Both Engage and the Veterans and People’s Party failed to meet the deadline for reporting donations and could face sanctions.