'DUP TRYING TO HIJACK TRADERS' MEETING'

THE DUP has been accused of attempting to "hijack" a traders' meeting to be held in Glengormley next week.

Two meetings have been scheduled to take place to discuss the proposed Town Centre Masterplan for Newtownabbey.

Both will address traders' concerns about the Glengormley side of the ambitious scheme.

And both are to be held in the Thunderdome Cafe, with the first tonight (Thursday, Jan 6) at 6.30pm and the second next Tuesday, January 11 at 6pm.

One trader said he was left scratching his head when he heard about the two meetings.

He said: "To have two meetings is just a total mess, it is a poor reflection on Glengormley."

Councillor Brendan Carlin said tonight's meeting was an attempt by the DUP to "hijack" the matter.

"They have been running around trying to get the traders to their event, but there will be none of the interested parties that are coming to next Tuesday's meeting.

"This was absolutely crazy to try and organise a second meeting causing so much confusion," he claimed.

North Belfast MLA Nelson McCausland said councillor Carlin's claims were "unhelpful".

"Thursday's meeting will be about gathering a consensus and then taking our concerns as one to the relevant bodies.

"The meeting is a DUP organised event and we want to gain as much input from as many traders as possible," he commented.

Read the full story in this week's Times...