WE WERE saddened by the decision of the DUP to take for themselves all but one of the senior council posts on offer at the Newtownabbey Council AGM last Monday evening (June 7).
In normal democracies, senior offices are generally shared, thus ensuring that the wishes of the electorate are accurately reflected in policy and strategy decisions.
The DUP on the council have taken for themselves senior offices on all but one of the six influential council committees (excepting a vice chairmanship of a committee which meets a few times a year). In doing so they are effectively disenfranchising the 16,091 ratepayers in the constituency who did not vote DUP or for Tommy Kirkham.
In the last elections the DUP achieved 43.9% of the vote. They have taken over 90% of the senior positions on offer. Those frozen out at the AGM and denied any meaningful say in the running of the council represent 53.2% of the votes cast in that election.
The attitude of the DUP suggests political greed and selfishness. The decision to take all and to deny any opportunity to share with others in the chamber is deeply damaging to community relations. It also highlights the need to ensure that the DUP are never again given access to unfettered power because it is clear that when they have access to power they will abuse it.
Councillors John Scott (UUP) and Tom Campbell (Alliance).