19/01/2017 The View


19/01/2017

Mark Carruthers and guests review the week's political events from Stormont and Westminster and follow the highs and lows of the political week.


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Transcript


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The end of a remarkable career that saw a republican from the Bogside

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embracing the political process, ultimately leading to

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Tonight on The View, we look at the political legacy

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From the rubble strewn streets of 1970s Derry to the gilded

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rooms of Windsor Castle, Martin McGuinness has been a major

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figure on the political scene for more than 40 years.

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Now, due to ill-health, he's standing aside.

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The question I ask myself is, are you capable, are you physically

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capable of fighting this election with the intensity collections need

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to be Fort? The answer is I am not physically capable.

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With me in the studio, the DUP MP, Ian Paisley,

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whose father had a remarkable relationship with Mr McGuinness,

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Conor Murphy of Sinn Fein, and our Political Editor,

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And from our Foyle studio, Denis Bradley, who knows

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Sinn Fein does a U-turn on a public inquiry into RHI.

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What impact will that have on the crisis that saw another

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I'll be asking the opposition parties what they want

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And after another week of twists and turns,

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in Commentators' Corner we've Professor Deirdre Heenan

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After weeks of speculation over his future, the announcement

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finally came in an interview in his home town.

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One of the most prominent political figures of the last 40 years

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confirmed he will never again be an elected representative.

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Our Political Editor, Mark Devenport, spoke

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In the aftermath of the assembly election last year, I agreed to stay

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on. I said I would do it for a further year, that would bring me to

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the 8th of May. It would have been the tenth anniversary. That was a

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very historic moment. There was the crisis of Stormont and a big

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decision had to be made as to whether or not I would contest that

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election. A lot of decisions had to be taken into consideration so I've

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given a lot of careful thought to death over the course of the last

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couple of weeks. The question I ask myself, are you physically capable

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of fighting this election with the intensity that lecterns need to be

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fought? The answer is that I am not physically capable. Are you

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disappointed that your decision to retire from politics have come at a

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time when the Stormont institutions have effectively collapsed and how

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hard do you think you will be to restore them? These things cannot be

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seen in isolation. I think that is sheared by their sympathy to all

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things Irish. Please institutions could only work on the basis of

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equality. Specifically in relation to the scandal, I provided a way out

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for Arlene Foster and she refused to take it. I phoned her and I said,

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Mike Nesbitt is calling for a head. He is calling for your resignation.

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Without an enquiry of any description. What I am asking for is

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your cooperation to do what Peter done previously, stand aside for

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four or five weeks. She refused to do so. Your journey has been

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remarkable from the early days when you were pretty open about your role

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within the RIAA to later days when you were seen as a peacemaker. --

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IRA. Do you regret anything about your earlier endorsement of the use

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of violence to further your aim is? People have to consider the

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circumstances that existed at the time joining the IRA. In the city,

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people were being murdered by the RUC. Whether they were being

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murdered wholesale as they were on bloody Sunday. Many young people

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like myself supported by many thousands of people in the city, the

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majority, decided to fight back. I don't regret any of that. But I

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think that people can judge all of that. The don't understand what was

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happening in the city at the time. Is there anything the Martin

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McGuinness of today would tell the Martin McGuinness of the early 70s

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now with the benefit of hindsight in what you've seen? There's no point

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in me telling the Martin McGuinness the 70s anything about what he

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should or should not have done at that time. There were particular

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circumstances that existed in the city when the city was occupied,

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where people were being downtrodden as a result of the Unionists and

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Stormont supported by the British Army. I have to deal with all of

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that on a very philosophical way. I am proud of the tradition that I've

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come from but I'm equally as pride of the people who are about to

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emerge next week and you will know about this next week, the new

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leadership in the north. I think people will be inspired. Will you

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see a united Ireland in your lifetime? I am very determined to

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ensure we continue for the work of the reunification of Ireland.

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Obviously I will not be ever again an elected representative but I

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would hope that I would have a key role to play in terms of continuing

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to build support for the peace process, build support for unity,

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build support for reconciliation and in terms of reconciliation, I don't

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think I could be criticised by anyone for what I have done that.

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Although there have been some Republicans, mostly on the extremes,

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even someone mainstream, who thought that meeting the Queen, going to the

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Somme, going to Flanders Fields, the many other acts of reconciliation

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that I've been involved in was a bridge too far. The argument was

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always put that it was a bridge too far for them, not because they were

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opposed in principle but because there was no reciprocation coming

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from the DUP. I don't actually remember the last time I heard a

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member of the DUP the word reconciliation when you consider the

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fact that Arlene Foster has been in the post now for a year. I have

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memories of Peter's speech in New York when he talks about the need to

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work together. I haven't heard any of that from the present leadership

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of the DUP. Mark, you were there

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with Mr McGuinness in I've conducted in many interviews

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over the year with Martin McGuinness but I think this was the first time

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when off-camera didn't see him in there, but his wife was there, one

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of his brothers was there, one of his sons was there providing company

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and support for him. Whilst we were setting up the gear and even before

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anything had been said and he made his opening statement, you got a

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sense this was a seminal moment for not only Martin McGuinness but also

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his family. This wasn't going to be an ordinary interview. He didn't use

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the word retire, he still wants to play some role in public life

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afterwards, it was clear from what he said that this was really the end

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of an error and it was evident then in the emotion we've seen him that

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she would near his home in the Bogside at that little gathering

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this evening. -- era. The kind of emotion he was holding within

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himself I was conducting that interview. Thanks very much indeed.

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With me now are the DUP's Ian Paisley and Sinn

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You must have known this day was fast approaching,

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but was it still difficult to take in when it was confirmed

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Yes, obviously personally I am very sad. He's been a good friend and

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mentor of mine for almost 30 years. I have learnt a huge amount from

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him. It is the huge hole which has been recruited in the middle of our

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organisation. He will still be there for us. In terms of the role he has

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played over recent years in both leading the Sinn Fein operation in

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the north but also across Ireland, his contribution to the peace

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process, to reconciliation and the drive that he brought in to that,

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the patience and determination and the fact that you not only

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challenged himself that other Republicans and people right across

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society in what reconciliation looks like, his relationship with Ian's

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father. They were derided for the friendship that they had by people.

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People would like to see if he chuckles around Stormont at the

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moment. He has been a huge figure in the peace process here and his

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retirement is a very, very sad day not just for Sinn Fein but politics

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generally across Ireland. Your father, against all

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expectations, formed a close First of all, I'm going to wish

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Martin McGuinness well in his retirement. I hope that he has time

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to get over his health issues and to enjoy a time of retirement with his

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wife and family. Any politician knows the importance of that and the

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ability to be able to enjoy that. Thank you is the second thing going

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to say. It's important we reflect on the fact that we would not be where

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we are in Northern Ireland in terms of having stability, peace and the

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opportunity to rebuild our country it hadn't been for the work that he

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did Putin, especially with my father, the beginning of this long

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journey. I'm going to acknowledge the fact that perhaps if we got back

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to that foundation work of building a proper relationship and

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recognising what partnership actually means, we can get rid of

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the mess we are in. You have no difficulty as a Unionist here

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tonight seeing you warmly applaud his contribution, particularly in

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recent years. Do you think there are other Unionists who don't really

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appreciate that and don't really understand it? I do not believe it

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is necessary for Ian Paisley Iranian Unionist to qualify every comment

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with the fact that eight, I'm a Protestant, it's different to the

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Catholic decide me, I'm a Unionist and a Loyalist and I think something

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different to the Nationalist republican beside me. Can we please

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get over that? We as political leaders have to demonstrate by our

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actions and words and our top that we are over that. The sooner we do

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that then me saying thank you to I'm diametrically opposed to an ancient

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have to say that I'm opposed to, it's obvious. I can say thank you

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them honestly and humbly and recognise the remarkable journey

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that Martin McGuinness went on has not only save lives but has made the

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lives of countless people in Northern Ireland better because of

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the partnership Government that we worked on and up it together. That

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is important and it's important that I see it. It is interesting that you

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say it. It is honest. I'm glad you point that out. The reason I put the

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question the way I put the question is because not every DUP

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representative I would be having this conversation with who would

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express views in the way you'd express them. It is very significant

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you're seeing what you're saying. As politicians we have to be more

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honest. Otherwise the sort of crisis were in at the moment will become a

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normal feature of Northern Ireland political life and the fact of the

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matter is the chuckle Brothers, as it was derided, is actually

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something for people to look back on and see if we had that type of

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relationship, some of the problems to do with reconciliation that

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Martin McGuinness has chided and scolded and some of the issues that

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we tidied and scolded Sinn Fein about, those issues would not be as

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difficult to deal with. They will still be there. What do you think

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then is your message to those members of the DUP watching this

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choking on their horror lurks? Thinking, steady on, Ian, let's not

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over do it here. We remember him from the past and we find it

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difficult to forget that in the circumstances.

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It will not put our country back together again. We have a

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responsibility as political leaders to put this back together again and

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the sooner more of us are honest about this, the better. I don't

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expect Martin McGuinness or anyone to deny who or what they are or what

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has happened in the past. If they did it just to make it easier for

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me, it would not be honest. What is your response to that? Are you

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surprised? No, I am not because I know that Martin will do good

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relationship with many unionists and the Paisley family. I am not

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surprised that they now at a personal level his commitment to

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reconciliation. I am is that Ian is honest enough to say that. I know

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that let down by both governments -- Martin felt let down. We needed to

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see more generosity and the spirit of reconciliation and genuine

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power-sharing and we were not getting that. And then obviously the

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RHI scandal developed and was being investigated. These issues were

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flagged up and I think we are looking for not a new agreement but

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genuine partnership and adherence to principles of the Good Friday

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Agreement. Ian Paisley, what do you say, in response to the interesting

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question about the current leadership of the DUP and its

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approach to Sinn Fein and how it dealt with Martin McGuinness and the

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way the party had those Russian jets under your father. Martin McGuinness

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said he asked Arlene Foster to cooperate with him. Do you think the

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current DUP leadership has gone off the rails? I am always honest with

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you. If people do not learn lessons from what we do politically then we

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are destined to repeat mistakes. Lessons that are learnt from the

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present time so mistakes are not repeated. Has Arlene Foster got it

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wrong? I will say it very plainly that there are lessons to be learned

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on all sides of this to make sure we get... Including an the DUP

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leadership? There are lessons to be learned on all sides and we must

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learn them or we will keep on repeating these mistakes. Thankfully

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the mistakes which have been made at the present time are not the

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mistakes of atrocity but of policy and politics and by politicians and

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I hope that the craft of politics now improves and the short learning

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curve people are an on all sides of the organisation starts to learn

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more. Let's bring in our Political Editor,

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Mark Devenport, who spoke to Martin McGuinness this afternoon,

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and in our Foyle studio is Denis Bradley, the former

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Vice-chair of the Policing Board and author of the Eames-Bradley

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Report on the past, who's known You can't have been surprised

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at today's development? That does not surprise me but I'm

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glad to hear that warmth in the public statement and I think he is

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right that we need to get some of that warmth more often than we do.

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There will be people, and we spoke earlier on today, who are Unionists

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and nationalists and you will know them in your home city who will

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still struggle to forgive Martin McGuinness and forget his

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involvement 30 and 40 years ago. I am quite sure that is true. Martin

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and I come from the same part of Ireland, or at least our people do,

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and none of us were born with a spoon in our mouth and Marton like

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myself was an ordinary youngster, better looking than I was, mind you,

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but he was born into a very specific area and also a time within Irish

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history. As thousands of other youngsters were. You have used the

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word is a remarkable journey and it was one from fast becoming

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recognised within the republican movement and the IRA and Sinn Fein

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that he had abilities and then using those abilities and determination to

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actually bring that same organisation to an end. That is an

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enormous contribution to this island, to all the people. I will

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just say this, he used people like me and maybe specifically me at

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times, to actually save lives. I know there were alive is taken and

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many people hurt but he actually, where he could intervene and where

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he could use people like me to actually stop something happening or

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save somebody's life or make sure somebody wasn't killed then he did

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that and he did it often. So in some ways the peace side of him was

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always there and it developed and I think that is part of the remarkable

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journey. I think those people who are hurting because of the IRA need

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also to know that a lot of us were caught up in those times, in those

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dynamics, and if they had not been there and history had not been so

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cruel then perhaps we might have been better friends. What do you

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make of the warmth of the tribute paid by Ian Paisley to Martin

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McGuinness tonight and I wonder if you might have a stab at decoding

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his comments about the current DUP leadership needing to learn the

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lessons of the past? Understandable because Martin McGuinness built this

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report with Ian Paisley's father and that is remembered by the rest of

:20:23.:20:26.

the Paisley family. It is clear we could have other people from the DUP

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here tonight and they would not repeat those comments so it is not

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necessarily the sentiment of the whole party. I think obviously Ian

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is indicating that you need not just the cool and businesslike demeanour

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of more recent years but to build a bit of report to overcome

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difficulties and it did strike me as I was listening that sometimes

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people have said once the Troubles generation is gone then things will

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somehow become easier but it is not just that generation that poses a

:21:04.:21:08.

potential obstacle but you do need some of the personal gifts that

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Martin McGuinness used so much particularly in the latter of his

:21:12.:21:16.

career so we talk of having a long shopping list of demands and how

:21:17.:21:21.

difficult it was, it is never going to be quite as difficult as it was,

:21:22.:21:29.

we hope, as it was in the 90s but Martin McGuinness demonstrated

:21:30.:21:34.

bridge building skills, undoubtedly, and we will still need that in the

:21:35.:21:38.

future, whatever obstacles we are trying to surmount. Martin

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McGuinness said in the interview this afternoon that the announcement

:21:45.:21:48.

about his successor will be known next week and he says it will

:21:49.:21:53.

inspire people. Do you know who that is? It will be announced next week.

:21:54.:21:59.

The party is having discussions and making arrangements but one

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announcement today is plenty. Today we are dealing with Martin's

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resignation. There is business to be dealt with on Monday in the Assembly

:22:10.:22:13.

as well and we will come to that in the fullness of time. You talking to

:22:14.:22:18.

the new leader of Sinn Fein? You are not. The leader is Gerry Adams. The

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leader in the North is regarded as Martin McGuinness. You have just

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said it is not you. It is not. The replacement is yet to be decided and

:22:37.:22:39.

that will be announced next week. Would you be an inspiring choice? It

:22:40.:22:46.

depends on people's view. I'm not sure! A lot of people are suggesting

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on social media are suggesting you will be named as the next leader.

:22:55.:23:01.

The party will decide and it will be announced next week. I am surprised

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that you say it is yet to be decided because of Martin McGuinness said he

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had the fullest confidence in this person. He said in the leadership

:23:12.:23:16.

that will be announced. We are a party in transition and Gerry and

:23:17.:23:30.

Marton... There is a new leadership emerging and the people who will be

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at the point of that, the head of that in terms of the North, will be

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announced. The DUP has a woman in the leadership role. There is talk

:23:41.:23:44.

that Sinn Fein might want to mirror that by putting Michelle O'Neill

:23:45.:23:50.

there. Entirely possible. If you were a betting man? I have no vices

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whatsoever. You will have to wait till next week. A lot of people are

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suggesting on social media that Ian Paisley is in with a shout as the

:24:08.:24:10.

next leader of Sinn Fein after your comments tonight. Oh, sorry, the

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DUP. It doesn't matter who I want as the leader of Sinn Fein but what

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they're skills are. Skills that will include building a relationship to

:24:27.:24:31.

move the executive forward. That is where the lessons learned from the

:24:32.:24:35.

last number of weeks about how we try to create that Russian ship are

:24:36.:24:37.

important because they need political craft and -- relationship.

:24:38.:24:51.

They need political craft. Arlene Foster has your full support as

:24:52.:24:59.

leader? Yes. What would happen for that to change? For her to retire.

:25:00.:25:08.

And that would be her decision. Do you think that is imminent with the

:25:09.:25:14.

way the RHI thing has been handled? I have seen much adjusted to Connor

:25:15.:25:19.

and I almost felt sorry for him for a moment. I think a lot of people

:25:20.:25:26.

are saying that after what you were saying today it would like a pitch

:25:27.:25:29.

for leadership of your party. Are you positioning yourself in case

:25:30.:25:34.

Arlene Foster does not make it to them? -- until autumn. Are you going

:25:35.:25:46.

for director-general of the BBC? I don't think that position is

:25:47.:25:53.

available. Exactly it is an irrelevant question. Who needs to

:25:54.:26:02.

take over Sinn Fein? Someone without military involvement or a background

:26:03.:26:07.

in IRA? That is happening anyway. Time is passing and none of us are

:26:08.:26:10.

getting any younger who have been around in the 70s and 80s and I

:26:11.:26:14.

think that new generation is taking over. I'm not too sure the

:26:15.:26:18.

leadership of Sinn Fein is a vital issue. Connor referred to the fact

:26:19.:26:24.

that Martin had said he was disappointed and two governments in

:26:25.:26:28.

the last period of time. I would also echo that, that I would be

:26:29.:26:34.

disappointed at the distance the government has kept even when they

:26:35.:26:37.

tell us that they were there and they were up and down, foreign

:26:38.:26:40.

affairs are there, British government are there, they are

:26:41.:26:47.

keeping a watching rather than acting brief and I think next time

:26:48.:26:50.

we would need the involvement of both governments to bring this

:26:51.:26:55.

about. There is a growing danger that the institutions will not be

:26:56.:26:59.

re-established again. We will leave that there are.

:27:00.:27:03.

On last week's programme the Communities Minister,

:27:04.:27:06.

Paul Givan, made comments about the Finucane family

:27:07.:27:08.

during a discussion about the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.

:27:09.:27:10.

We have been asked by the Finucane family to clarify

:27:11.:27:13.

that it has no position on the Renewable Heat

:27:14.:27:15.

Mr Givan went on to make reference to Sinn Fein advancing

:27:16.:27:19.

The Finucane family has asked us to make it clear

:27:20.:27:22.

that it does not support, or form part of, any

:27:23.:27:25.

The BBC regrets any distress caused to the Finucane family by those

:27:26.:27:30.

Now, we've become used to at least one politcal story every day,

:27:31.:27:37.

and today didn't disappoint with the news of that public inquiry

:27:38.:27:41.

-- that we were hoping to talk about but didn't quite get onto any detail

:27:42.:27:54.

of. In a moment we'll hear

:27:55.:27:55.

from the three opposition parties, There are shortcomings, for example

:27:56.:28:03.

ministerial interference and I pledge I will not interfere in this

:28:04.:28:09.

inquiry. Another shortcoming is that it is delivered to the minister so I

:28:10.:28:13.

make a pledge on Battle of Sinn Fein and myself that we will ensure any

:28:14.:28:18.

report that is delivered was directed the public. Set the

:28:19.:28:23.

shortcomings aside. Time is short. Any investigation or inquiry would

:28:24.:28:26.

have to go to the Assembly next week. The only route possible is a

:28:27.:28:30.

public inquiry and I have chosen that and I think the public welcome

:28:31.:28:34.

mat. They understand politicians fight their corner but there comes a

:28:35.:28:38.

time to make a decision. We welcome the change of heart from Sinn Fein

:28:39.:28:44.

in setting up this public inquiry. It is something I have been wanting

:28:45.:28:47.

for some considerable time. I think it was mid December when I said we

:28:48.:28:53.

wanted to take place. Earlier this week I wrote to the other parties

:28:54.:29:00.

and indeed Sinn Fein, suggesting a way forward but now I am very

:29:01.:29:03.

pleased that the inquiry is come to be set up and that finally we will

:29:04.:29:09.

get some due process in and around these matters and we will get to the

:29:10.:29:15.

truth about what happened in relation to the RHI scheme. As was

:29:16.:29:22.

confirmed yesterday in the committee I have absolutely nothing to hide.

:29:23.:29:25.

Joining me now are Nichola Mallon from the SDLP and Stephen Farry

:29:26.:29:28.

I do want to talk to you about RHI but I can't not talk to you about

:29:29.:29:42.

the retirement of Martin McGuinness. Extraordinary comments from Ian

:29:43.:29:46.

Paisley about the significance of Martin McGuinness's role. Philip,

:29:47.:29:51.

forgive me for saying, they are in stark contrast to the tribute paid

:29:52.:29:58.

by the -- your party leader this evening. Do you accept that? I wish

:29:59.:30:03.

Martin McGuinness well in his retirement and I hope he has a

:30:04.:30:07.

recovery from his illness. Undoubtedly, he has been on a

:30:08.:30:13.

journey from IRA commander and meeting the Queen, it's just a pity

:30:14.:30:19.

that as the leader of an organisation that made short the

:30:20.:30:23.

journey of many hundreds if not thousands of victims with their

:30:24.:30:30.

futile terrorist campaign that he couldn't in his words tonight

:30:31.:30:33.

actually expressed regret for the many victims that his organisation

:30:34.:30:39.

created. His past was more important than his present? He has been on a

:30:40.:30:42.

journey and I recognise that but we cannot forget the past and many

:30:43.:30:46.

hundreds if not thousands of victims. Undoubtedly, Martin has

:30:47.:30:52.

underwent a huge transformation and a very big political and personal

:30:53.:30:57.

journey. The true sign of leadership is having the courage to lead,

:30:58.:31:01.

bringing people with you and reach out to those who have been hurt.

:31:02.:31:06.

Martin has demonstrated he has all those qualities. The big challenge

:31:07.:31:11.

now is for those who are to step into his shoes. That type of

:31:12.:31:16.

leadership is needed now more than ever. Your thoughts on it. You have

:31:17.:31:21.

no difficulty paying tribute to him but how do you strike the balance

:31:22.:31:25.

can be constructive role and his past? I wished him well on Monday in

:31:26.:31:31.

the assembly. He is a leader and has travelled a very long distance and

:31:32.:31:34.

particularly his relationship with Ian Paisley was important and it

:31:35.:31:39.

shows that leadership has to be based not on just institutions but

:31:40.:31:45.

on mutual respect and trust. At the same time, this is the bigger issue

:31:46.:31:48.

than Martin McGuinness stepping down. There are some deep divisions

:31:49.:31:54.

between the parties, problems with the structures. He is going to be a

:31:55.:31:58.

very difficult act to follow in terms of what comes next. Let's talk

:31:59.:32:03.

about our each eye, that's what you are here to discuss. Under any other

:32:04.:32:10.

circumstances, do the programme would have been directed towards

:32:11.:32:13.

RHI. Were going to get more details in the assembly next week on the

:32:14.:32:18.

Finance Minister's public enquiry. It looks like you're getting what

:32:19.:32:23.

you want in terms of the public enquiries. Have Sinn Fein managed to

:32:24.:32:26.

outmanoeuvre or all of the parties by doing what they've done today? We

:32:27.:32:31.

sought to significant U-turns today, one from Sinn Fein and the DUP. Sinn

:32:32.:32:37.

Fein's U-turn was on the public enquiry. I was on the radio this

:32:38.:32:42.

morning and he was adamant there wasn't going to be a public enquiry

:32:43.:32:47.

and by early evening we've had someone saying the exact opposite.

:32:48.:32:52.

It's what you wanted. They may have come late to the party as far as

:32:53.:32:55.

you're concerned but never last Sinn Fein is doing what you wanted it to

:32:56.:33:00.

do. We will wait to see the detail of it next week from the statement

:33:01.:33:07.

to the assembly. I would have preferred the Secretary of State to

:33:08.:33:12.

have been leading on it and I hope whatever he proposes, there will be

:33:13.:33:18.

a preliminary report before action. Doesn't actually matter? You say

:33:19.:33:21.

you'd prefer the Secretary of State to be leading on it. It is going to

:33:22.:33:26.

be led by a judge, hopefully appointed by the Lord Chief Justice.

:33:27.:33:32.

That's what we want to see. That's what's happening. The Lord Chief

:33:33.:33:35.

Justice is happening. He was bitterly terms of residence

:33:36.:33:43.

together? More of that next week. A smart move by Sinn Fein. There has

:33:44.:33:47.

been flip-flopping in recent weeks, Declan made the case this morning on

:33:48.:33:52.

BBC radio Ulster in addition to be a public enquiry and then by tea-time

:33:53.:33:55.

there has been a U-turn. The point is it's happening. It is finally

:33:56.:34:01.

happening. The gathering by Sinn Fein over the past 30 days has cost

:34:02.:34:06.

the taxpayer two point three ?5 million. It is cause them a lot of

:34:07.:34:12.

money for every day the debt owed. This scandal didn't just come on

:34:13.:34:18.

Sinn Fein's horizon when the BBC ran the Spotlight programme. The me

:34:19.:34:22.

about it in February and it cost ?20 million, that we have been

:34:23.:34:27.

consistently Colin the three parties very public enquiry and finally a

:34:28.:34:30.

significant cost to the taxpayer, it Sinn Fein are done the right thing.

:34:31.:34:35.

That is to be welcomed. There can be no political interference in this.

:34:36.:34:39.

The appointee must be on the recommendation of the Lord Chief

:34:40.:34:45.

Justice and the report must be published up its immediate

:34:46.:34:50.

completion. We are very clear... March movie and has said it will

:34:51.:34:55.

happen. It would have been much better if Sinn Fein is keen to this

:34:56.:34:58.

position earlier on because it wouldn't have done the damage that

:34:59.:35:02.

it has done and it would have done the damage has done to the public

:35:03.:35:08.

purse. James Brokenshire Shire said the announcement is important to the

:35:09.:35:11.

confidence in the ability of the institutions to deliver and help set

:35:12.:35:16.

the tone for the election to come. Do you agree? Misses commentary from

:35:17.:35:19.

the sidelines in the Secretary of State who could have called this

:35:20.:35:22.

public enquiry several weeks ago in line with some of the warnings we

:35:23.:35:28.

were given. Does it matter? The point is it's happening. I welcome

:35:29.:35:32.

the fact were having it but I angry and frustrated. This could have

:35:33.:35:38.

happened many weeks ago. In that interval we have seen our political

:35:39.:35:41.

institutions collapse. It is uncertain if they are going to be

:35:42.:35:47.

restored. We have a very long potential gap between restoration.

:35:48.:35:51.

The establishment of a public enquiry would have saved the

:35:52.:35:55.

institution. You can reasonably say the blockage around the RHI scandal

:35:56.:36:01.

was the final straw and there were structural problems

:36:02.:36:02.

behind-the-scenes, tension is building up over Brexit. This was

:36:03.:36:11.

the straw that broke the camel's back. If this had beaten to -- that

:36:12.:36:16.

plays much earlier, we wouldn't have had a situation where we don't have

:36:17.:36:21.

a budget, no plans in terms of Brexit. There is a real pain down

:36:22.:36:26.

the tracks for the fact we don't have the Government in Northern

:36:27.:36:28.

Ireland and no one is going to be arraigned for several months taking

:36:29.:36:32.

decisions and that could have been avoided. Simon Hamilton has said he

:36:33.:36:36.

is publishing the names at the recipients of the RHI scheme next

:36:37.:36:42.

Wednesday. Do you welcome mat? Absolutely, if he is filled his

:36:43.:36:48.

promise. Are you clear of what that means? Not in terms of what he is

:36:49.:36:53.

promising to do. Arlene Foster has promised a public enquiry in other

:36:54.:36:56.

proposals that never actually came for it. We will wait and see what

:36:57.:37:01.

comes forward. I mentioned earlier to U-turns. The DUP this special

:37:02.:37:09.

advisers, one has no stood aside and one has resigned from their post

:37:10.:37:11.

after saying there was nothing to see here. They both maintain that

:37:12.:37:21.

position? Why has he resigned? He's become a distraction is the

:37:22.:37:25.

explanation. We are seeing bureaucracy within the DUP. The

:37:26.:37:29.

power they seem to have within other organisations. I just wonder who is

:37:30.:37:35.

making the decisions. Is it elected politicians are special advisers?

:37:36.:37:38.

That is something that will come out of this public enquiry. Is the

:37:39.:37:43.

publication significant? It is very important we get the heart of who

:37:44.:37:48.

has benefited -- benefit from this scheme. We need also remember there

:37:49.:37:53.

is a number of organisations and businesses that Anfield this scheme

:37:54.:37:56.

in the right way, there were those that abused it. We mustn't allow to

:37:57.:38:00.

happen is for companies and visitors who have done no wrong because they

:38:01.:38:04.

legitimately appealed the scheme to be used as scapegoats. Was there any

:38:05.:38:11.

evidence that would be the case? It is something we have to be concerned

:38:12.:38:15.

about. There is a mudslinging campaign or people are accused of

:38:16.:38:18.

doing things wrong with that they haven't. There are people within the

:38:19.:38:21.

political system that had done things wrong. You can't say you want

:38:22.:38:28.

to protect these businesses who have quite legitimately taken out an

:38:29.:38:31.

investment through the RHI scheme and at the same time complain about

:38:32.:38:37.

losing ?85,000 a day and ?20 million a year. It's got to be one or the

:38:38.:38:42.

other. It's not about the protection of farms. It's finding out who

:38:43.:38:47.

benefit. We are finding out who abuse the scheme and who were in

:38:48.:38:50.

positions of authority, what they knew, when they knew it and what

:38:51.:38:57.

they did did not do to try to it. VDU PR Bisley has its bad troubles.

:38:58.:39:01.

Maybe Arlene Foster can have a spring in her step in the end of the

:39:02.:39:06.

week now that the permanent secretary has said there was no

:39:07.:39:09.

evidence of any wrongdoing on her part that he could see. He as a

:39:10.:39:13.

civil servant is not going to challenge her. He gave a very

:39:14.:39:20.

straight and serve. It was following the advice of the civil servant.

:39:21.:39:24.

Ministers are there to set the policy and scrutinise what's coming

:39:25.:39:30.

forward from their officials. I would also stressed that special

:39:31.:39:35.

advisers act solely on behalf of ministers. The are fully accountable

:39:36.:39:39.

for the action of his special adviser whether the actions are

:39:40.:39:43.

authorised not. If special advisers are involved in the actions, the

:39:44.:39:48.

ministers do have to be accountable. No doubt that is something the

:39:49.:39:53.

enquiry will look at in considerable detail. Thank you all very much.

:39:54.:39:56.

And joining me now in Commentators' Corner are Newton Emerson

:39:57.:39:58.

That alter course. In a direction I didn't necessarily anticipate. --

:39:59.:40:15.

that all took off. What you make of the tribute Ian Paisley me to Martin

:40:16.:40:22.

McGuinness tonight? His father's enemy and latter-day friend? You

:40:23.:40:26.

could say it was extraordinary, it's show stopping. It properly did make

:40:27.:40:29.

people take a second look and think did I really hear that? He is in the

:40:30.:40:37.

spirit that we need more generosity, more compassion. What he has said

:40:38.:40:43.

does not in any way diminish his Unionist credentials, he still

:40:44.:40:45.

supports the union but he is able to see that Martin McGuinness was a

:40:46.:40:49.

peacemaker, that he pushed the boundaries and I thought it was

:40:50.:40:54.

interesting that he said because of Martin McGuinness people alive today

:40:55.:40:56.

that otherwise wouldn't have been. He didn't focus on the negative, he

:40:57.:41:02.

could have. What is fascinating, if you took a random sample of 50

:41:03.:41:07.

members of the DUP and put them in that seat, how many of them would

:41:08.:41:13.

say anything close to what he said? Almost none. Ian Paisley is not in

:41:14.:41:17.

the leadership of the DUP so a remark like this can only be aimed

:41:18.:41:23.

at the leadership of the DUP. A to think that was a formidable pitch

:41:24.:41:27.

for the leadership of the future. In my view, he is very clearly and

:41:28.:41:31.

correctly judged what has gone wrong which is very much the style and

:41:32.:41:37.

tone of the present leadership. It explains an absurd extent,

:41:38.:41:40.

everything that has gone wrong at the moment. We did see signs today

:41:41.:41:44.

that Arlene Foster is beginning to... Was that a thinly veiled

:41:45.:41:50.

criticism of the leadership of Arlene Foster? It was very fierce!

:41:51.:41:59.

And being diplomatic. She is down and he has given her a kicking. You

:42:00.:42:06.

seriously think as much as that? He was basically saying what we are

:42:07.:42:10.

missing here is the ability to build relationships, to be pragmatic, to

:42:11.:42:15.

be progressive. Which isn't to say you should welcome an amazing

:42:16.:42:18.

demonstration of what it all like that can achieve. It was a very

:42:19.:42:25.

assertive to Arlene Foster. All focused on the person of Martin

:42:26.:42:28.

McGuinness. Ian Paisley throws no punches on other issues when the

:42:29.:42:36.

notion takes them. He's also saying the politics of Northern Ireland are

:42:37.:42:40.

at risk here and he is recognising the danger that if we don't sort

:42:41.:42:44.

this out, we are looking into a very precarious future. In that sense, he

:42:45.:42:53.

is... Although there are many tears not shared Martin McGuinness inside

:42:54.:42:57.

the DUP at the note you will be difficult to replace. The are not

:42:58.:43:02.

concerned about more assertive Sinn Fein but we don't think the talent

:43:03.:43:08.

is there. That has an interesting point. Conor Murphy was very cagey

:43:09.:43:11.

about whether he is going to be taking over from Martin McGuinness.

:43:12.:43:15.

After what he said, you would properly think not. Martin

:43:16.:43:18.

McGuinness suggesting he's going to be an inspirational choice. I

:43:19.:43:22.

thought a head towards Michelle O'Neill? In recent days, the mood

:43:23.:43:27.

has been moving towards Michelle O'Neill. She has been described as

:43:28.:43:31.

their senior minister and of good money, the betting money on her. She

:43:32.:43:38.

is clearly up for the replacement. Maybe we will know this time next

:43:39.:43:40.

week. Thank you. That's it from The View

:43:41.:43:41.

for this week. Join me for Sunday Politics

:43:42.:43:43.

at 11.35 here on BBC One. So, from tomorrow we will have a new

:43:44.:43:46.

man in the top job across the pond. But let's not forget

:43:47.:43:50.

the guy that's leaving. He and his family have given us

:43:51.:43:52.

some memorable moments. Donald Trump, tweeting out insults

:43:53.:43:54.

to Angela Merkel?! This gives the Internet one last

:43:55.:44:55.

chance to talk about our bromance. I have two more words to say. Obama

:44:56.:44:56.

out. With visitors to

:44:57.:44:57.

Northern Ireland on the rise,

:44:58.:45:01.

Join Mark Carruthers and guests on Thursdays for The View - the week's political news, comments and expert analysis. The View reports events at Stormont and Westminster and how they are affecting issues such as health and the economy. It follows the ups and downs of the political parties and debates the highs and lows of the political week. It also has an alternative view on the week's political headlines.


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