15/03/2016 Stormont Today


15/03/2016

A political programme focusing on the day's events at the Assembly and Northern Ireland Executive. Mark Carruthers is the guide through the corridors of power at Stormont.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 15/03/2016. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to the final edition of Stormont Today before

:00:25.:00:26.

There was a distinct 'last day of term' feel to proceedings

:00:27.:00:31.

as Members not standing again made what they knew would be their last

:00:32.:00:34.

For others who know they can't take their re-election for granted,

:00:35.:00:38.

there must have been a strange mixture of nostalgia and dread.

:00:39.:00:42.

And while the plan had always been to tidy up any legislative loose

:00:43.:00:45.

ends today, the mood did change markedly as news came

:00:46.:00:47.

through that the prison officer attacked by dissident republicans

:00:48.:00:50.

eleven days ago had died unexpectedly.

:00:51.:00:54.

There was condemnation from all corners of the House...

:00:55.:01:16.

It was a case of fond farewells from those MLAs we won't see

:01:17.:01:19.

It was meant to be a day of passing legislation and saying goodbye

:01:20.:01:48.

to retiring colleagues, but the bouyant mood on the hill

:01:49.:01:51.

changed not long after midday when news of the death of the prison

:01:52.:01:54.

officer injured in a dissident republican attack reached MLAs.

:01:55.:01:56.

Adrian Ismay was seriously hurt after a booby-trap device exploded

:01:57.:01:58.

under his van in Belfast earlier this month.

:01:59.:02:00.

It's understood he died from a heart attack after being rushed back

:02:01.:02:03.

The last item of business in this mandate was a late-evening statement

:02:04.:02:07.

I know I speak for everyone in the assembly when I say that our

:02:08.:02:19.

thoughts and prayer is an with his wife, his daughters and the wider

:02:20.:02:23.

family circle as well is his problem as Michael colleagues and friends.

:02:24.:02:29.

Adrian's death has come as a shock, he was a husband, father and

:02:30.:02:33.

grandfather and was in his family home, the pain of his loss will be

:02:34.:02:38.

felt most. This demonstrates that despite the progress that has been

:02:39.:02:41.

made over the past decade, there are still those in our society who will

:02:42.:02:45.

target a husband and father because of the uniform he wears to work.

:02:46.:02:50.

There is nothing noble or braver about skulking around in the shadows

:02:51.:02:55.

and bringing death. I think it is also appropriate that we sent a

:02:56.:03:00.

clear message to those who carry out these types of incidents and now an

:03:01.:03:04.

attack in which a person has died, but they have no mandate or a little

:03:05.:03:20.

or no support and with the Minister agree that the best way we can send

:03:21.:03:24.

that message is to remain united in our approach to these people. I

:03:25.:03:27.

agree that what we need is united condemnation from disassembly and we

:03:28.:03:29.

need a united community response against those who would seek to

:03:30.:03:31.

divide us. Today we are reminded once again that despite our

:03:32.:03:36.

differences, we are one society, one people, united and indivisible in

:03:37.:03:42.

the face of terror. We stand as Democrats against such terror. They

:03:43.:03:48.

will not succeed, Mr Speaker and can I simply ask, would he directly

:03:49.:03:53.

convey to the family our thoughts this evening to Adrian's family and

:03:54.:04:01.

friends? Certainly I am expecting to be seeing the family during the day

:04:02.:04:05.

tomorrow and I will be conveying the wishes expressed around this house

:04:06.:04:09.

which I am no doubt will continue unanimously when I meet the family.

:04:10.:04:14.

I want to join with the Minister and the entire house to express profound

:04:15.:04:19.

sadness at the death earlier today of the prison officer. I want to its

:04:20.:04:24.

breath sympathy to his wife, his family and his colleagues on his

:04:25.:04:29.

tragic and untimely death, the lives of his family have been changed

:04:30.:04:33.

utterly and for ever and I believe that those responsible for the

:04:34.:04:36.

planting of the under vehicle device 11 days ago there are very heavy

:04:37.:04:41.

responsibility for the death of Adrian Ismay.

:04:42.:04:44.

So, today was the final sitting of this Assembly -

:04:45.:04:47.

would you believe it was plenary number three

:04:48.:04:49.

That's what the Speaker informed Members as he opened

:04:50.:04:52.

And there was a rather light-hearted mood in the chamber as several

:04:53.:04:56.

of the longer-standing Members spoke for the final time.

:04:57.:04:58.

Mitchel McLaughlin began by thanking everyone for their contribution...

:04:59.:05:03.

I wish to thank all of you who are not coming back, all the best

:05:04.:05:09.

forward over the future holds and I hope those of you seeking

:05:10.:05:13.

re-elections enjoy the campaign as well is have a successful one and to

:05:14.:05:16.

all of those who are not coming back and I am one of them, we should keep

:05:17.:05:21.

in touch. I think we are the owners of the corporate memory of this

:05:22.:05:25.

institution and it was a pleasure to know each and every one of you,

:05:26.:05:34.

thank you very much. APPLAUSE. It gives me great pleasure

:05:35.:05:37.

to speak on the half of the Ulster Unionist Party and most importantly

:05:38.:05:40.

I would like to start out by paying tribute on the half of the party and

:05:41.:05:46.

indeed the Ulster Unionist MLA group to Leslie Cree, Sam Gardner, Michael

:05:47.:05:50.

McGimpsey, Michael Copeland and Neil Somerville who will not be standing

:05:51.:05:54.

in the upcoming election, all of them have made a considerable impact

:05:55.:05:58.

in their constituencies and Northern Ireland. It would be remiss of me

:05:59.:06:03.

not to acknowledge the dedication and hard work of Danny Kinahan and

:06:04.:06:09.

Tom Elliott MP who left the UUP group for Westminster last year.

:06:10.:06:14.

Those who cause are bloody and deceitful past will not be allowed

:06:15.:06:20.

to raise their part in it. However much they try, they will not be

:06:21.:06:26.

allowed to do it. Battles must still be fought, for me the arena will

:06:27.:06:30.

change. The venue will be different. But that campaign must and will be

:06:31.:06:37.

waged until won. I am not standing for election with my colleagues, Mr

:06:38.:06:41.

Speaker, but I am standing on the same ground, with them, and beside

:06:42.:06:48.

them. And together, we will take this country forward to be a much

:06:49.:06:54.

better place. Thank you. Mr Speaker, in the last century when I was first

:06:55.:07:00.

elected, to this assembly, people used to ask me, what did I do? And I

:07:01.:07:07.

said I was a fire man, a political firemen, I put out political fires

:07:08.:07:11.

and that is what we did for the first five years, we put out a

:07:12.:07:18.

political fires and I have now become redundant or semi-redundant

:07:19.:07:20.

in relation to that and I only do that on a part-time basis, because

:07:21.:07:24.

the political fires are much less than they have been in the past. As

:07:25.:07:30.

the only ever MLA from an ethnic minority background I was glad to be

:07:31.:07:36.

in a position to set up the all-party group on ethnic minorities

:07:37.:07:42.

and human trafficking. As well as lobbying with the voluntary sector

:07:43.:07:47.

extensively for a racial equality strategy which was finally published

:07:48.:07:54.

last year. I hope that MLAs will continue to monitor progress on

:07:55.:07:58.

these issues and to speak out against racism. I will be watching

:07:59.:08:04.

you. I am proud of what I achieved. I am proud of what I tried to

:08:05.:08:10.

achieve. And for those that follow me, now, and in the future, I will

:08:11.:08:17.

give them a famous quotation from Winston Churchill. Success is not

:08:18.:08:24.

final, failure is not fatal, what matters is to have the courage to go

:08:25.:08:31.

on. Mr Speaker, I will go on, I will leave this place with my head high,

:08:32.:08:36.

with my colours flying, with my dignity intact and with all

:08:37.:08:43.

conviction about what is good for Northern Ireland. I wish you Mr

:08:44.:08:47.

Speaker and all our colleagues good luck for our bright future and a

:08:48.:08:52.

healthy retirement and for my final few words, I appeal to our first and

:08:53.:08:57.

Deputy First Minister and their new executive to keep Northern Ireland

:08:58.:09:00.

stepping forward and faster, to create a better future in peace and

:09:01.:09:05.

prosperity for everyone, particularly our senior citizens. I

:09:06.:09:09.

have never raised my voice in this house until now when I say loud and

:09:10.:09:16.

clear, Hans off our bus passes! Hands of aggro our bus passes!

:09:17.:09:19.

Kieran McCarthy speaking up in defence of the over 60s bus pass.

:09:20.:09:22.

It was in fact quite an emotional day for quite a lot of people.

:09:23.:09:34.

Indeed. For some of them it is the last day at school because they will

:09:35.:09:38.

not be back. They will go on to other things, including the people

:09:39.:09:45.

we have seen giving their farewells. Many of them, only half a dozen or

:09:46.:09:51.

so have been there since 1998 but nevertheless, I think all and all, a

:09:52.:09:56.

few will not be back, a few of the current sitting members. It is

:09:57.:10:02.

another issue and we have become used to that because we have this

:10:03.:10:06.

co-op system and we have seen quite a few new faces. The committees

:10:07.:10:15.

continue until the end of the week. It is the day of mixed emotions,

:10:16.:10:20.

some will be relieved to hang up their boots and go into retirement

:10:21.:10:26.

or semi-retirement, sample go gracefully, some perhaps less

:10:27.:10:29.

gracefully than they might have wished, I think Gregory Campbell

:10:30.:10:36.

left on a sour note by way of his last day. He has in effect been

:10:37.:10:40.

forced out because of the end of double jogging. Overall, the mood

:10:41.:10:45.

was not self congratulatory but I think there was an air, I thought

:10:46.:10:52.

the Speaker made some good remarks from the chair, wishing them all

:10:53.:10:57.

well for the future and of course, that was the first time we had seen

:10:58.:11:02.

Sinn Fein Speaker in the assembly, a first for Northern Ireland and quite

:11:03.:11:08.

an event when it occurred. We had Basil McCrea announcing that he is

:11:09.:11:13.

not in fact standing against in May, one of the more high-profile members

:11:14.:11:18.

to say goodbye to the assembly, did that come as a bit of a surprise? I

:11:19.:11:23.

think after the interview he did last week, the writing was on the

:11:24.:11:30.

wall. I think a lot of people felt discomforted and notwithstanding

:11:31.:11:35.

that he was out leafleting as late as last Friday, I think it did not

:11:36.:11:41.

come as a surprise. His career, he and John McAllister, what they

:11:42.:11:46.

launched, the N121 party, three years ago and I remember sitting

:11:47.:11:50.

alongside John McAllister, the night he announced he was resigning from

:11:51.:11:54.

the UUP and both he and Basil McCrea came to see me before then to talk

:11:55.:11:59.

about them striking out on their own. They did not take my advice. I

:12:00.:12:08.

think the problem for them both, particularly Basil, was that they

:12:09.:12:13.

launched to early. But Basil is a bit like, Farrar, great swoosh of

:12:14.:12:21.

energy, this literary scene in the sky for a few seconds and then the

:12:22.:12:26.

rocket falls to earth a bump and I think like the rocket, Basil's

:12:27.:12:32.

career coming to Ashes is no supplies. I wish him well for the

:12:33.:12:36.

future, he has a lot of talent, I do not think he has a plan they

:12:37.:12:41.

currently, but I think it was inevitable and I think it was the

:12:42.:12:43.

appropriate thing to do. It was a case of roads and more

:12:44.:12:49.

roads during questions to the Regional Development Minister

:12:50.:12:56.

today - the maintenance of the ones we have, when the one

:12:57.:12:59.

we particularly want will actually be built, and how quickly

:13:00.:13:02.

or slowly we travel along our The latest journey time information

:13:03.:13:10.

my department has this from 2013, relating to journey times for cars,

:13:11.:13:15.

vans and HGVs. For a wrote stretch between the Ravenhill Road

:13:16.:13:25.

roundabout and Annadale embankment the average speed... This

:13:26.:13:35.

information is for the morning peak period, 7:30am to 9:15am. In 2013 it

:13:36.:13:41.

was the slowest Road in Belfast and I don't imagine that has improved

:13:42.:13:47.

greatly for drivers. Could the Minister advise when a new

:13:48.:13:50.

assessment will be given and what further actions might be taken to

:13:51.:13:55.

facilitate workers inside Belfast and further afield who are trying to

:13:56.:14:00.

get back to the city centre? Obviously we have been trying to

:14:01.:14:04.

encourage people to use public transport and have very good

:14:05.:14:09.

information relating to the park and ride where we have on average 500

:14:10.:14:14.

vehicles using that per day. There has also been a 12% increase in the

:14:15.:14:23.

number of passengers using buses. We also want to encourage the safe

:14:24.:14:27.

usage for cyclists on that route. I would like to thank your officials

:14:28.:14:33.

and staff for their assistance in consultations during the exhibition

:14:34.:14:37.

that have gone on throughout, and indeed their resistance was greatly

:14:38.:14:42.

appreciated to not just ourselves as MLAs but to others and people who

:14:43.:14:46.

would be affected on that road. Could I ask for what your feedback

:14:47.:14:51.

has been to date on the exhibitions at the consultation? They were very

:14:52.:14:59.

well attended with somewhere in the region of 1054 registered attendees

:15:00.:15:02.

at those events, the feedback from the officials has been that it was

:15:03.:15:05.

very positive and with the vast majority of people who were

:15:06.:15:10.

attending they were very supportive of the scheme. However I am aware

:15:11.:15:14.

that there were those who have individual concerns in relation to

:15:15.:15:20.

their properties. This is understandable given the impact this

:15:21.:15:24.

scheme will have on those families really as we move forward through

:15:25.:15:30.

the scheme, and my department officials will work closely with

:15:31.:15:33.

those landowners to try to assist them in any way they can do as we

:15:34.:15:39.

move forward. How much extra has been allocated for road maintenance

:15:40.:15:43.

within the District Council area of Mid Ulster this year? Including

:15:44.:15:50.

Cookstown, an official estimated one point formally in pounds was

:15:51.:15:55.

received for structural maintenance and around 800,000 for routine

:15:56.:15:56.

maintenance. The final Minister to face question

:15:57.:15:57.

time in this mandate was also one Lord Morrow hasn't been in charge

:15:58.:16:02.

of Social Development for long, but he's already had to deal

:16:03.:16:05.

with his share of reforming Yesterday he revealed

:16:06.:16:08.

the new guidelines - and today he was asked for more

:16:09.:16:11.

information by MLAs... Just to focus on the welfare cap

:16:12.:16:22.

amongst a plethora of figures. What the minister I think is saying is

:16:23.:16:28.

that there are at least ten families that he is protecting their benefits

:16:29.:16:37.

at a level above ?40,000 per year, because the average protection is 14

:16:38.:16:41.

on top of the benefit cap. Is that correct that there are multiple

:16:42.:16:46.

families of that order still receiving benefits in excess of

:16:47.:16:52.

?40,000? And is the minister comfortable with that? Does he think

:16:53.:16:58.

it is a good spend of public money? Sometimes it is not a matter of what

:16:59.:17:02.

the Minister is comfortable with, it is what the Minister and the

:17:03.:17:06.

Department and the regulations clearly state must happen and that

:17:07.:17:10.

is in regulations, and I don't often, indeed have ever had any

:17:11.:17:15.

control over that, but in relation to the number of families that he

:17:16.:17:19.

speaks about, I will double-check that for you because I know you will

:17:20.:17:24.

be interested in in having the exact detail and I will forward it to you.

:17:25.:17:35.

Are they content they will help protect those most in need? Yes, I

:17:36.:17:42.

had to assume, and I will be bitterly disappointed and I Suspect

:17:43.:17:54.

this house has not. They have been doing the work, and they are the

:17:55.:18:06.

experts and we have... We are led by them. If it transpires later that in

:18:07.:18:11.

fact they are not confident, then I think questions will have to be

:18:12.:18:17.

asked. I am assured that they are. In light of recent announcements

:18:18.:18:22.

emanating from GB, particularly around cuts to ESA and personal

:18:23.:18:27.

independence payment, has there been any assessment carried out or even

:18:28.:18:32.

connection made with the departments in GB to establish the consequential

:18:33.:18:37.

budgetary and indeed policy implications for welfare reform in

:18:38.:18:44.

Northern Ireland? Deputy Speaker, can I say in response of the member

:18:45.:18:53.

that the mitigation scheme is designed to provide financial

:18:54.:18:58.

support to claimants that are in receipt of benefits then when the

:18:59.:19:03.

welfare reforms orange juice, furthermore the introduction of time

:19:04.:19:07.

limited means will only be notified of the change a few months before

:19:08.:19:12.

that benefit is reduced or stopped altogether so effectively the

:19:13.:19:18.

one-year time limit rule will be applied retrospectively, and anyone

:19:19.:19:21.

claims benefit after the welfare reforms are introduced will be made

:19:22.:19:25.

aware of the conditions and apply to that benefit at the time of

:19:26.:19:28.

application. For employment and support allowance also, claimants

:19:29.:19:34.

will be aware of the contribution -based element, they will only be

:19:35.:19:39.

paid for one year if they are in work-related activity. This means

:19:40.:19:42.

they will be aware of the impact one year in advance and will have time

:19:43.:19:44.

to prepare for the benefit ceasing. Caral Ni Chuilin's last act

:19:45.:19:47.

in the chamber as Culture, Arts and Leisure Minister

:19:48.:19:52.

was to update the House on proposals for an Ulster-Scots Academy

:19:53.:19:55.

and an Irish Language Academy. It is not for politicians to suggest

:19:56.:20:03.

what way culture should develop. Our role is to ensure there are

:20:04.:20:07.

networks, structures and organisations in place to facilitate

:20:08.:20:12.

its development and ensure that our cultural roots remain accessible to

:20:13.:20:16.

all within our society. The Ulster Scots academy will be known as the

:20:17.:20:20.

Ulster Scots Institute and will be an opera -- not-for-profit company.

:20:21.:20:29.

It will be located at the corn exchange in the Cathedral Quarter of

:20:30.:20:33.

Belfast. The idea of an Irish language academy was first tabled in

:20:34.:20:45.

2006. Money should be used to create resources for use across the north

:20:46.:20:49.

and there should be a specific role for the Irish medium provider. Can

:20:50.:21:01.

she say how much capital has been allocated for the initiatives over

:21:02.:21:05.

the next three years? And secondly is there not an elite --

:21:06.:21:17.

inequalities that the Irish academy will probably be a social economy

:21:18.:21:23.

type initiative whereby the money is recycled back into the sector

:21:24.:21:28.

because they will own the building where is because we are locating the

:21:29.:21:38.

Ulster Scots Institute in the hub, that is paid to a developer who owns

:21:39.:21:45.

the building. There is over ?1 million of revenue over the next

:21:46.:21:48.

three years dedicated to the staff. In terms of the... It is probably

:21:49.:22:03.

less than 150,000 per year. I have encouraged Ulster Scots community to

:22:04.:22:10.

identify a cultural hub, and encourage them to use the library,

:22:11.:22:19.

which was unsuitable. The higher and further education sectors have

:22:20.:22:23.

suffered severe cuts to their budgets, so much so the University

:22:24.:22:30.

of Ulster had to axe the whole of the languages department. How can

:22:31.:22:34.

the Minister justify the economic case for the creation of the two

:22:35.:22:40.

academies? We need to make sure these communities are not further

:22:41.:22:44.

disadvantaged. There's already been cuts into programmes around the

:22:45.:22:47.

Irish language, I want to make sure that doesn't become a trend. Their

:22:48.:22:53.

obligation to set up both academies were set out in agreements going

:22:54.:22:57.

back over a decade and I believe that is unacceptable that from then

:22:58.:23:01.

until now we haven't established either in Institute.

:23:02.:23:12.

And in case you were wondering why the first part of that piece

:23:13.:23:16.

was signed - that announcement followed a statement

:23:17.:23:17.

on the initiation of a sign language process, the debate

:23:18.:23:20.

The final question time of the mandate was given over

:23:21.:23:24.

to the Assembly Commission, and Members wanted to make sure

:23:25.:23:26.

the new intake of MLAs will be properly tutored in

:23:27.:23:29.

Politics is a profession rather than a vocation and continued

:23:30.:23:32.

professional development is important in political life as it is

:23:33.:23:35.

in any other profession. It will be important for members newly elected

:23:36.:23:42.

to the Assembly to be provided with the appropriate induction and also

:23:43.:23:45.

be provided with ongoing professional development to support

:23:46.:23:51.

them in their role as a public representative of legislators.

:23:52.:23:53.

Politics plus is currently developing a new member induction

:23:54.:23:58.

programme which will be implemented following the election in May, and

:23:59.:24:07.

will scrutinise the work of the executive. Whilst it has been

:24:08.:24:10.

designed for new members, returning members are also free to participate

:24:11.:24:17.

as they require. In relation to the programme, would there be an

:24:18.:24:21.

emphasis on dealing with legislation and dealing with draft legislation

:24:22.:24:26.

in particular? Because I think it is a process that needs considerable

:24:27.:24:30.

skill and knowledge, and I would just ask if that were available. The

:24:31.:24:35.

induction programme will cover a wide range of areas including

:24:36.:24:41.

strategic planning, ethical leadership, speech delivery, dealing

:24:42.:24:43.

with difficult conversations and conflict resolutions. It will

:24:44.:24:50.

analyse complex information, working with the media, crisis management,

:24:51.:24:57.

merging reputational risk and the members code of conduct. Members

:24:58.:25:01.

attending will also receive briefings from employment law

:25:02.:25:07.

specialist from the Northern Ireland audit office. If members have any

:25:08.:25:12.

further ideas that commission members can bring to the politics

:25:13.:25:16.

programme, our doors are open and we would only be too willing before the

:25:17.:25:21.

end of this mandate to include any information required. Women are

:25:22.:25:29.

underrepresented in both political and public life, the evidence is

:25:30.:25:36.

there. We have too few female MLAs, woefully too few women on the bodies

:25:37.:25:42.

of public boards. Returning to the question in 2015 the Assembly

:25:43.:25:47.

commission established a woman in politics programme, this programme

:25:48.:25:51.

was aimed at female elected representatives in order to provide

:25:52.:25:55.

support for the development of their political careers and particularly

:25:56.:25:59.

to encourage female councillors to put themselves forward for future

:26:00.:26:03.

elections and develop links between local and central government. It's

:26:04.:26:07.

anticipated that the second cohort of this programme will be

:26:08.:26:09.

commissioned in 2016/ 17. The DUP's Paula Bradley -

:26:10.:26:13.

and Rick is with me for a final Very interesting day up here today,

:26:14.:26:21.

we had a lot of congratulation and goodbye in the early stage of

:26:22.:26:26.

proceedings, then we had the news at lunchtime that the prison officer

:26:27.:26:30.

injured in a bomb attack earlier this month had died unexpectedly,

:26:31.:26:35.

and things changed. Yes, it was like coming back to earth with a bump

:26:36.:26:40.

with that sad news. We don't know if there was any link between the

:26:41.:26:45.

bombing and what happened today with this party. It was a sad note that

:26:46.:26:49.

certainly coloured the atmosphere and the tone of the place

:26:50.:26:54.

thereafter. Looking ahead to people gathering here towards the end of

:26:55.:27:01.

May, discussing a programme for government and so forth, what are

:27:02.:27:05.

the big changes? We have spoken about changing faces but there are

:27:06.:27:08.

lots of things that will never be the same again. I suppose

:27:09.:27:14.

institutionally one of the obvious changes will be fewer departments

:27:15.:27:18.

come the end of May. There will be just nine where is currently we have

:27:19.:27:24.

12, and because of John McAllister's bill which has got itself onto the

:27:25.:27:28.

statute book, there will be some form of opposition available to

:27:29.:27:35.

parties. It is not as fully resourced as it might otherwise be.

:27:36.:27:41.

The bill was rather undone a little bit during the legislative passage,

:27:42.:27:46.

but nevertheless it is an option parties can choose to exercise. If

:27:47.:27:57.

those red lines are not met to his satisfaction, the SDLP could

:27:58.:28:03.

exercise that option. Just briefly, if the last five years of the

:28:04.:28:08.

mandate was a student essay, what grade would you give it? I was

:28:09.:28:15.

always reputed to be a very hard marker. On that basis, I would give

:28:16.:28:28.

them C for effort, a middling 2:2. Thank you very much indeed, always a

:28:29.:28:30.

pleasure. And that's it for tonight,

:28:31.:28:34.

and for this mandate. The Assembly is formally dissolved

:28:35.:28:36.

at midnight on March 29th and by then, of course,

:28:37.:28:38.

the election campaign The 108 new MLAs are expected

:28:39.:28:40.

to gather for the first time up here in Parliament Buildings

:28:41.:28:45.

on Thursday 12th May, and a new Executive -

:28:46.:28:46.

and perhaps for the first time a formal Opposition -

:28:47.:28:49.

should be in place by the end It's shaping up to be a hectic

:28:50.:28:52.

couple of months in local politics, and while Stormont Today won't be

:28:53.:28:56.

on air for several weeks, Sunday Politics and The View

:28:57.:28:59.

will be here to guide you through developments

:29:00.:29:06.

every step of the way. He is expected to be armed,

:29:07.:29:07.

and is extremely dangerous. No-one's put forward credible

:29:08.:29:13.

evidence that I acted unlawfully. GUNSHOT

:29:14.:29:20.

What do you reckon? I don't think you've got any idea

:29:21.:29:24.

what he's capable of. Easiest way to get away

:29:25.:29:27.

with killing someone? On Easter week 1916, a band of Irish

:29:28.:29:31.

rebels seized control of Dublin. For six days they held out against

:29:32.:29:42.

the might of the British Empire. Three of the rebels who held Dublin

:29:43.:29:45.

city that week were my uncles

:29:46.:29:50.

A political programme focusing on the day's events at the Assembly and Northern Ireland Executive. Mark Carruthers is the guide through the corridors of power at Stormont, and is joined by key people - from decision makers to opinion formers - to make the experience enlightening and entertaining.