McCrea 'happy to have say' at hearing

Published Friday, 01 February 2013
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Lagan Valley MLA Basil McCrea has said he is happy he was able to have his say at an Ulster Unionist Party disciplinary hearing on Friday.

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Mr McCrea appeared before the party's disciplinary committee during a three-hour meeting at the UUP headquarters in Belfast.

He was called before the five-strong panel after it was deemed he stepped out of line with the party on a number of issues. Mr McCrea strongly denies this.

Last month he refused to support a DUP amendment to a UUP motion in the Assembly.

He opposed the proposal to remove reference to the Good Friday Agreement in an Assembly policy on commitment to inclusivity, mutual respect, peace and democracy, in the wake of the flag dispute.

He previously had the UUP whip removed after he publicly disagreed with the party's stance on flying the Union flag at City Hall, and said he agreed with the Alliance Party motion of flying it on designated days.

After the meeting, Mr McCrea said officials hadn't indicated if the hearing had gone in his favour, but said he had put his case across.

"I do feel I've had the opportunity to put my case, and I'm looking forward to hearing what they make of it," he said.

"There was an exchange of views, of professional attitude and I had the opportunity to advance my argument."

Mr McCrea maintained he is not currently considering leaving the party.

"I've made it quite clear. I joined the Ulster Unionist Party because of the Belfast Agreement - the shared future aspect, the values and principles and I still believe that those fundamental building blocks are the way forward for this part of the world," he said.

"As long as I feel the Ulster Unionist Party is wedded to those principles, and carrying out those policies, that's where I'll be."

He added that he wouldn't rule out legal action if the committee's decision went against him.

A statement from the Ulster Unionist Party said their disciplinary committee will give "careful consideration" to the representation given by Mr McCrea.

A spokesperson said: "The determination of the Committee will be issued in due course."

© UTV News
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11 Comments
gerard in belfast wrote (441 days ago):
coming from the falls i have to say if we had politicians like basil mcCrea in the DUP and SF this country could be a great place to live not like now there is no law and order the partys dont care they go on tv just to get there faces seen so the small minded people will vote for them like SF would say thats show the british this r that the DUP would tell the loyalist we need u to stop a united ireland wat we need is a government for all the people not partys nit picking at each other to win votes we have 1 life thats make the best off it good luck MR MCCREA WISH WE HAD MORE LIKE U
realistic in planet earth wrote (441 days ago):
"Charles in Lisbellaw wrote (4 hours ago): @Eamo in Belfast; States; "There will be more chance of a shared future in the Alliance Party". Are you having a laugh, David Ford has proved time and again that he is a green tinted sectarian bigot who has an anti Unionist agenda running through everything he does/says akin to the legend in a stick of rock !." I think its YOU having a laugh Charles..... IF Mr Ford was as you say, then WHY ohh WHY didn't his party go ahead and vote with the other partys who wanted the flag up for ZERO days??? If he is as you say, then why did his paty put up the COMPROMISE of flying it on designated ays Charles? :)
paul in belfast wrote (441 days ago):
A difficult one here for the UUP finger waggers. Basil makes a brave stand to uphold what the party signed up to, and won`t be giving up his principles and responsibilities to stay on the good side of Mr Nesbitt . He is a real man of honour.
Charles in Lisbellaw wrote (441 days ago):
@Eamo in Belfast; States; "There will be more chance of a shared future in the Alliance Party". Are you having a laugh, David Ford has proved time and again that he is a green tinted sectarian bigot who has an anti Unionist agenda running through everything he does/says akin to the legend in a stick of rock !.
Nationalist in gls@gmail.com wrote (442 days ago):
Basil is a highly educated, sensible and broad thinking unionist politician. He is the type of leader that is needed in Northern Ireland. I have heard Basil commenting on various Political issues, especially education and employment. As a Politician he is one of the best!
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