I wish Peter Robinson well in his retirement, but the time had come for Ukip


I wish Peter Robinson well in his retirement.

His retirement marks the close of another chapter in the history of unionism.

It not only opens opportunities for new leaders but it marks another stage in the development of unionism.

The recent engagement in a political settlement, the latest of many, underscores the significant clout national politics and the UK government has in our local affairs.

With this in mind, and given the overwhelming majority who wish to remain part of the UK as evidenced in recent opinion polls, we can not only say that the union and unionism is safe, we can see how Northern Ireland politics needs to become more fully engaged in national politics and in national affairs.

The great political issue of the day – and indeed of this generation – is the EU referendum.

With this in mind and with the absolute economic necessity that we leave the EU becoming increasingly clear, local voters should take the opportunity to support Ukip and, through that, engage more fully and effectively in national politics.

Ukip fit the bill as a unionist party and as a national party and are a natural choice for many unionist voters.

They are worth your vote, your preference and your transfers.

So my message is to rise above the carve-up politics which has so disfigured local politics here, and take the opportunity to vote for Ukip and join 4 million other UK voters.

Ukip will not always be denied its rightful place, a place currently subverted by a crooked, skewed, first-past-the-post voting system.

Vote Ukip and vote for our national future, engaged in worldwide trade.

David McNarry, Ukip’s Northern Ireland leader