09/01/2017 BBC Newsline


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You're watching a specially extended BBC Newsline,


with one main story - the Deputy First Minister Martin


McGuinness announces that he's stepping down.


He says the public are outraged at the squandering of money,


Today I have told Arlene Foster that I have tendered my resignation,


effective from five o'clock today. I believe today is the right time to


call halt to the DUP's arrogance. Arlene Foster said she is


disappointed by Sinn Fein's decision, which she says leaves no


government to resolve the problem. I'm at Stormont where we'll be


asking how we got to this point, we'll have reaction from all


the parties here and we'll be trying In our other news this evening,


a drunk driver who killed teenage student has his jail term increased


by the appeal court. As the last United Airlines flight


from Belfast to New York takes off, hope that other airlines may


interested in taking over the route. And it's been chilly enough today


after the mild weather over the weekend but that's nothing


compared to what's coming our Warnings have been issued for both


snow and strong winds. Martin McGuinness says he is


resigning as Deputy First Minister because it's "time to call a halt


to the DUP's arrogance". While there has been more


than a month of political wrangling over the renewable heat scandal,


in his formal resignation letter to the Assembly


Speaker Robin Newton, Mr McGuinness said that The DUP had


never fully embraced "the equality, mutual respect and all-Ireland


approaches enshrined He also said successive


British governments had. "Undermined the process of change


by refusing to honour agreements ... While imposing austerity


and Brexit against the best Mr McGuinness then went


on to say that the DUP leader Arlene Foster had a clear


conflict of interest". And as "


The minister responsible for the RHI role in overseeing how it


would be rectified." Mr McGuinness who has been suffering


from ill-health in recent months said that had nothing to do


with his decision to leave office. In a moment, in this specially


extended BBC Newsline, we'll hear what his resignation


means for the Assembly and the prospect of an election


as Sinn Fein say they will not be We will find out what his


resignation means for the assembly and look forward to the prospect of


an election but first our correspondent Gareth Gordon looks to


the announcement that took many by surprise. He looked and sounded


frail but there was no doubting the strength of what Martin McGuinness


was about to say. We in Sinn Fein will not tolerate the arrogance of


Arlene Foster and the DUP, Sinn Fein was -- Sinn Fein wants equality and


respect for everyone and that is what this process must be about. So


today I have told Arlene Foster that I have tendered my resignation,


effective from five o'clock today. He made it clear this was no longer


just about the heating scandal and that alone. Said other decisions.


The speckled assertions. The RHI was -- has run over by half ?1 billion


and has left the process wide open to corruption. All of these things


are hugely concerning for others in Sinn Fein and you can see by the


wiki debate on hurling side has continued in the cause of recent


times there is a massive public outcry. There may not be a mass of


public-private outcry in the ranks of the DUP, I told Arlene Foster the


DUP have been living in a bubble. They do not seem to understand how


serious the general public and voters and other parties in the


assembly make of this ridiculous situation which bears full


responsibility for the Minnesota the DUP rebel in charge. Martin


McGuinness was asked if his health was a factor. My health has


absolutely nothing to do with this whatsoever, I have been deeply


involved in all of the conversations in the course of recent weeks, not


just with our negotiating team but I was here last week speaking to


Arlene Foster. I have been doing my job. As is appropriate for me to do


so. Sounds like it'll take more an election to resolve this. There will


be no interruption to the status quo and spent -- now return to the


status quo except on terms acceptable to Sinn Fein. The


situation we have been dealing with this unacceptable, I have now called


a halt to the DUP arrogance and of the DUP think in the aftermath of an


election that they can step back into ministerial positions short of


resolving the critical issues, some of which I have identified during


the course of this conversation, then they are living in a fools


paradise. In an election will Martin McGuinness be a candidate? Goal that


is something I will speak to you about at a later date, about my


resignation. Ten years ago Martin McGuinness began a relationship with


a DUP leader that was warmer than anyone could have expected. But as


the cash for ash scandal heated up things with Arlene Foster cools


down, and Stormont now faces a very long time with a deep freeze, --


with a deep freeze. Let's get analysis from our


political editor Mark Devenport and Mark people will be surprised


not just by the announcement by Martin McGuinness today but also


by the obvious deterioration Sinn Fein has not specified what the


illness is that Martin McGuinness has been suffering from City Council


that your god is the trip to China last month, but you don't have to be


a doctor to be light it is serious. Has it been a factor in the


decision-making in this? Martin says no, what we did speak to the former


Sinn Fein MLA Daniel Mackay earlier today and he said that comments from


Arlene Foster at the about Sinn Fein politicians jockeying for politician


-- for position behind Martin McGuinness's back at up the ante. I


think those comments from the First Minister went down like a lead


balloon, obviously the First Minister thought that by trying to


raise the health of the Deputy First Minister that she could create a


distraction from her own problems but I think all it does, all it has


done is highlighted the lack of leadership skills the First Minister


has because if the Deputy First Minister had been in the same


position he would not have taken advantage of his partner's health.


Set out the timetable of what happens. At five o'clock tonight


Martin McGuinness and Arlene Foster officially stop being first and


Debbie diverse minister. Arlene Foster can still carry out some


functions of the office but effectively the clock is ticking and


the bat on passes to the Secretary of State on Monday. It is then up to


him to cause a -- to call an election. You can take a reasonable


measure of time by doing that but if he does call an election on a


six-week campaign we could look at a fresh poll in early March.


And all the while, while the election campaign takes place, what


happens with the RHI scheme? In terms of stemming potential


losses, ?490 million, that is now scheme that has been put in place.


In terms of the Green bean independent investigation, nothing


on that score either. Some might say we are cutting off our nose to spite


our face but Sinn Fein says when we return it will not be to the status


quo so that must mean wider negotiations not just on the


renewable heat scandal but on a wider range of issues.


Well Martin's McGuinness's decision to resign comes almost ten years


BBC Newsline's Mark Simpson looks back at some of the twists


and turns which led up to today's dramatic events.


He has been Stormont's longest serving minister, stretching back to


the early days of power-sharing. I nominate Martin McGuinness as


Minister for education. An even bigger surprise was to come when he


became Deputy First Minister, he got an remarkably well with Ian Paisley.


We have been described as the chuckle Brothers by people who


thought that might by people who would have demeaned as in the


beginning. It turned against them in the end and we hope we can chuckle


through 2008. Would Peter Robinson took over as First Minister


relations became strained, very strange, but they somehow managed to


work through it. We have disagreements at times, there has


never been an occasion where we have refused to speak to one another so


we have the ability to sit down and work out your problems. When Arlene


Foster became First Minister initially be worked well together,


and at the time of last year 's election Martin McGuinness said he


was looking forward to making the new executive work. I am as fit as a


fiddle, I have all my faculties and great support from my family and


party and they are adamant I continue with the work I do. The IRA


tried to kill Arlene Foster's father, for how this meant that


working with Sinn Fein was never easy but she said she was prepared


to do it for the greater good. I want to focus on the future and not


the past. One of the big challenges was a Brexit Ford, it did make life


difficult but did not cause a crisis. The test will be how this


British Prime Minister deals with the issues of concern that we have


raised to what will be a very historic negotiation. Now a definite


was Asian is on the cards. On the table will be RHI, the Irish


language, social issues, dealing with the past and all the other


issues that have poured DUP and Sinn Fein apart in recent months. That --


now a definite change is on the cards.


Let's TZ some of those issues. Paul, you have been accused of arrogant


and living in a bubble. Given that came from Gerry Adams that is said


on that issue. Obviously we're disappointed that Martin has decided


to resign and walk away instead of dealing with these problems, we had


an election months ago and Arlene was returned with a renewed mandate


of over 200,000 votes, Sinn Fein did not like that and I can understand


why but we need to work through these problems but instead they


walked through the door. We will go to the country and put forward


positions and let's be clear, this is not about the RHI scheme, the now


can't be an enquiry because of Sinn Fein, we cannot recover the money


under the proposals that we are ready to use because of Sinn Fein,


instead they have called an election. Because this is about


removing Arlene Foster as the leader of unionism and weakening unionism


to pursue a public agenda. Did you take Sinn Fein and the support for


granted? We did not, we recognise that the electorate at the people


return individuals to office, we do business with people on that basis.


We are not friends with Sinn Fein did not seek to be friends with Sinn


Fein but we do business with Sinn Fein because that is the electorate


decided to return. The public will suffer as a result of this decision


because cannot now have a budget. And the finance Minister knows that


better than anyone else. The voluntary and community sector will


be pitting people on notice. The Bedroom Tax for example, I can bring


a regulation in to stop that being introduced to Sinn Fein have two be


held to account for how they are using the public. With painting does


Arlene Foster stepping aside six weeks ago not look like a better


action? Arlene Foster is being called to account three Sinn Fein


Republican agenda, not evidence. That is due process to be followed,


we said we want the enquiry and said that we would have a public enquiry


under the enquiry is act 2005. Sinn Fein did not want that. We wanted


proposals to deal with these costs and Sinn Fein did not want it, they


want to go to the country because there are internal issues in


republicanism that is clear from the interview that Martin McGuinness has


given over who will replace him and there is a wider narrative around


the maze development, the Irish line which act, all the things that Sinn


Fein don't like. They have brought the issue is down. How the comeback


as a result of the -- after the results of the electorate is the


challenge. So that is not alternative? We are calling time on


corruption and arrogance, corruption evidence by red sky and numb and RHI


scheme, and of course there can be no investigation into the RHI scheme


until Arlene Foster steps aside. She has scuppered the investigation by


refusing to do that. But also breathtaking arrogance and


disrespect for the tradition as evidenced by the decision at the


mouth of Christmas, to take ?50,000 from children who want to learn


Irish language. Talking about straws that broke the camel 's back, the


RHI scheme and awaited DUP have created that scheme and refused to


shoot the military or allow us to have the investigation -- refused to


show humility. The issues that both concerned about, of course we are


concerned about, we want to see good governance. Did they take you for


granted? We want a government that has zero tolerance for sectarianism


of corruption. Did they take the public for granted? Did the bite off


more than they could chew? Did do not listen to the warnings?


Absolutely. The DUP were told again and again, act with respect to


everyone. Now we are facing internal action over corruption and


arrogance. Martin McGuinness said there will be no corrupt -- now


return to the status quo. It is clear that there will be protracted


negotiations are so we could have no Stormont for a couple of years. That


is up to the DUP in particular poll has already said about what happens


after the election. I'm saying very clearly there will be no return to


the status quo, we will not go back to any government that tolerates


corruption or sectarianism in any way and that is what has been


hallowed to happen in the last few weeks with the RHI scheme. We have


called time on that. Poll about the decision not Irish language that was


read by many nationalists as extremely arrogant. That is not the


case, Irish language is for everyone, it was Unionist to kept


the language alive Scottish Presbyterians, a language that all


should be proud of. When you look at Bursaries around ?500 per child, is


that money that could have been better spent? It was not an attack


on the Irish language. But to weaponised and use it as a cultural


weapon which Sinn Fein have done repeatedly that is what does most


damage to the Irish language. Do you find yourself in a long negotiations


when the Irish language act will come on the table and you will be


forced to bring that its additions up and running? The DUP have never


been forced to do anything at the behest of Sinn Fein and we will not


be forced to remove a leader at the behest of Sinn Fein. What are you


saying to the public? You will have no government for X number of


months? We want the government to work. We have shown government can


work and none of the issues that Sinn Fein have now used to justify


calling time as they have put it on these institutions are not the one


year ago, two years ago in terms of debates but for whatever reason and


the public know what they are within the republican movement there using


those reasons to bring these institutions to ahead thank you


both. The Secretary of State James


Brokenshire said a short time ago that the UK government


would do all it can to help The position is clear. If Sinn Fein


does not nominate a replacement to the role of the different minister


then I am obliged to call an election of the assembly within a


reasonable period. I would urge the political parties, the leaders of


the political parties to come together and work together to find a


solution to the current position and we will be doing all that we can


with the political parties and the Irish government to that end.


I'm joined now by UUP Leader Mike Nesbitt;


. This is the worst outcome for everyone, doesn't it? Yes, it is not


about the renewable heat initiative, if it was Sinn Fein would hang into


old Arlene Foster to account to bringing the cost controls were


missing. It cost ?85,000 of taxpayer money today because of the lack of


cost controls and they would be looking for a public enquiry or


something similar. So it is not about renewable heat it is about


Sinn Fein looking after Sinn Fein 's interests and I hope the public


reflect on the fact we have had ten years of Sinn Fein DUP rule, decade


characterised by scandals, tobaccos and disappointments and if we do go


to the polls but remember that there is the possibility of change. There


was change in America and with Brexit, people do react when they


get angry and people are angry about renewable heat. Poll given was


pretty bullish about their chances in an election and you are a long


way behind them. This surely cuts down on the time you had to give


unionism Altera device. Yama what is different about this cannot compare


to the others like red sky and the social investment fund, people


generally get this, they understand cash for Ash is a real scandal and


the crush of -- the cross about it. They may welcome the opportunity to


commit an vote and if you look at voting patterns in 1998, ten to the


assembly 70%, last year 55%, if anything will encourage people to


come out and vote for change, to change this full record of


incompetence, this must be it. Thank you. Let's hear from the leader of


the SDLP. This is disastrous for all the parties because you have to


quote and face the electorate several months after doing the same


thing. We are not afraid of an election, we look forward to it. But


it has been brought about by Arlene Foster's arrogance and Sinn Fein 's


weakness over the past ten years. Did they not commit stronger today


because they have brought the institutions down and forced her


hand and she did not take it? They had an opportunity to vote for the


public enquiry and didn't take it. If you look at what happened today,


Sinn Fein talk a lot about the ad is in good and equality. They produced


a draft programme for government couple of weeks ago was no mention


of an Irish line would act, nor anti-poverty strategy and now


poverty Bill, but we were told we had to wear that and accepted so


Sinn Fein are now seeing they are annoyed at the way the DUP have


acted but they have aided and abetted them for ten years. I don't


know what they're worried about, we do know today is the will not be a


full public enquiry into the RHI scheme. Those people who should be


afraid of accountability are getting a two-month holiday from a


credibility. I do not understand it in the public don't. Could be a much


longer holiday all-round, Google will wonder about a budget and what


happens next. We still don't have a budget or a final programme for


government, we don't have a plan for Brexit. During this crisis what will


happen is Theresa May will trigger article 50. We will be in the


process of Brexit in the area most affected by it will have no voice.


That is because of the arrogance and weakness of these two parties.


Let's hear from the Alliance party. The Brexit issue is a massive one,


we have Nicola Sturgeon talking about them being the only government


with a plan. We are part of the UK with no government. Worse than that,


when we did have a government it was not one capable of showing


leadership which is why we're standing here today. The reality is


that the DUP have been entirely tone deaf, both of the partners in


government and the anger of public outside these situations. Sinn Fein


are happy to prop up when it suited them because they too were being


arrogant, we were not seeing the proper process is being gone through


with respect to budget controls and everything else. Now we find that


Sinn Fein are obviously getting pushed by their own electorate and


so they have called this four part biblical posturing, not for the


public of Northern Ireland. The public are sick to the back teeth of


the crisis at Stormont. They want good government and to see people


who are less keen to dig responsibility as they are to take


power. And what we have here is not that it is the opposite. That is the


message you have said before and it has not seen the Alliance through to


victory. It has not but this is a different situation because what I


detect that there is real anger, real anger and change things and we


offering them a different alternative. We are willing to take


responsibility and stand up and be accountable. If others were willing


to do the same we would not be in this mess.


Thank you. Quite the hill to climb. We are back later in the programme


with our political editor. For now it is back to you. In a few minutes


we will speak to article commentators about the resignation


of Martin McGuinness and its applications.


In other news - A drunk driver who killed a County Tyrone teenager


has been given an extra year in prison by the Court of Appeal.


18-year-old Enda Dolan was knocked down and killed


His father says the increased jail sentence is not enough.


Enda Dolan was a talented teenager who had just started studying


architecture at Queens University. He was knocked down and killed by a


drunk driver on the 15th of October 2014 as he returned to his halls of


residence. Evidently steward of Grace Park Avenue was sentenced to


see and have years in jail with another three and a half on licence.


The sentence was referred to the Court of Appeal 's on the basis that


it was unduly lenient. The court was reminded that on the night of the


killing steward had consumed six pints of beer, for cocktails known


as Eurobonds and the other drinks. It was also suggested he had been


taking drugs before getting behind the wheel. The Court of Appeal


decided to increase the sentence which means it steward. The had --


spend an extra year in prison. Increasing the prison term from the


scene half to a foreigner have used the Lord Chief Justice said nothing


is court can do can turn the clock back. What happened was needless,


senseless and entirely avoidable so Declan Martin said in cases of this


kind deterrent sentences must continue to be imposed. While


welcoming the increase, the boy's father said it should have been


more. Satisfied would be the word, again in my opinion it is not enough


given the crime that he committed. I think it is still a disgrace, I


think the justice system needs to be looked at, I think legislation in


relation to drinking and driving needs to build that. Since Enda


Dolan's death that is something the whole family has to deal with


everyday. Christmas was difficult, there was an empty seat at the table


and there was a lot of tears. Unfortunately that is the way it is.


You must either family celebrations like birthdays and other times of


the year that you have other family gatherings and he is not there. The


dull and family say they will continue the campaign to have


sentences for drunk drivers who kill increased.


A solicitor for a 22-year-old man accused of procuring drugs intended


to cause an abortion has protested about delays


two drugs which are commonly used woman is charged with taking


to bring about a miscarriage or abortion.


The case was adjourned until later this month.


As many as three airlines are said to be looking at


a new Belfast to New York air service.


Today Northern Ireland waved goodbye to its existing link


Our business correspondent Julian O'Neill reports


The last United Airlines New York flight was almost fool with 150


passengers booked to travel. The route is being axed due to its pure


financial performance and after the airline said that the European


Commission indicated a ?9 million rescue package involving Stormont


would break rules around state aid. It is a sad day for us and for me,


it is, I chose to come over and they choose to come at New Year and see


Mum and go home at the last one and say goodbye to your. The


grandchildren are here so it makes it so convenient, instead of flying


into Dublin, waiting the hour for the bus, two hours on the bus etc


etc. This was Northern Ireland only year round long haul flight, and


when the executive has claimed was important to attracting inward


investment by US companies. The service has been running for the


best part of 11 years, but finding a replacement is not proving


straightforward. I understand the airport is presently in negotiations


with up to three airlines with a view to taking on the New York


route. There are several hot leads and we will follow up with that to


get that replacement in but it does take time, you can switch it on


overnight. Airlines do not have available aircraft ready to go so we


will keep talking to those carriers. I understand the low-cost carrier


Norwegian air is one of those taking a look. It might be seeking public


funds before committing to not just a New York service but Boston as


well. A bus driver has been praised


for helping to save a middle-aged man who was


in a distressed state The driver was on an early morning


journey from Londonderry to Dublin Rowland Ward set off an ordinary


express run to Dublin seven on Saturday morning. Within half an


hour, his day took an extraordinary tone on this bridge on 01. There was


a young man working for us and another gentleman in his early 50s.


He looked distressed, this person, and I looked. I stopped the bus, it


was just a reaction and when I got off the bus and looked, he was on


the other side of the ratings towards the Riverside. It was still


dark and every passing moment was critical. The man was in distress on


the side of the bridge and the efforts of the bus driver and Newman


became a mental and physical struggle. I had him by one arm, and


a young fellow had him by the other arm and we were trying to physically


pulled across the railings to try and get him. Then a young fellow


came with a safety harness that he had on the back of his van, and he


put that on the side of the bridge, he leaned over the bridge, lifted


his legs up. The bus driver says that he has been assured that the


man he helped is now in good care, and following his dramatic


intervention, he is now taking this week off work. Back to the main


story, the resignation of Mark McGuinness as Deputy First Minister.


We have been asking people on the streets of Belfast what they think


about what happened today. It is very sad that he has stepped down


but it will probably have a big impact on what this to come for


Arlene Foster and the rest of the country, really. It is another


election. Nothing we can do about it. Will it make any difference the


assembly? Not really. Who knows what is going to happen next? It is


interesting that something is moving, anyway. What we think of the


possibility of another election? Would I like one? Don't know, just


don't know. At least it's sort of start something. I'd be disappointed


if there was another election. I am not sure that it would make any


difference. But if it does, we will have two pass the vote and see what


comes out of it. How do you think the RHI scandal has reflected on the


assembly? It has not reflected well. A lot of people are very cynical of


what is going on. It is time for an election, definitely, we need


change. Do you think it should have come to this? I'm sorry you did. I


don't know. Would it make any difference? I don't know. The last


thing we need now is an election. We need to come together and sort out


the problems we are already trying to deal with. Do you think an


election could make any difference to the assembly? I don't know, but


of all the time and effort that will be spent on it it is not what I


would be spending time and effort on. Just a sample of public opinion


there. Who wins and loses this? I'm not


sure that anybody wins. I reckon action thing could not have let it


go any longer to let this week build-up to some kind of melodrama


would have made them look worse and would not have done Arlene Foster


any good, either. Beyond that, in electoral terms, it would have


damaged things as much as staying on would have done to Sinn Fein. From a


unionist voters' point of view, will the election and possible


resignation make much difference? This will not be an election about


the RHI scandal. Sinn Fein has known about this for over a year


internally. It is also the case that all of these other issues that have


been raised, gay rights, the Bill of Rights, things that had been long


forgotten when the DUP and Sinn Fein were working coherently in


government together over seven months have been known about.


National inverses of an arms that Sinn Fein seems to be getting


nothing out of Stormont, so it is wider than RHI. What it will come


back to is what sort of politicians will, what platform will politicians


be going forward on. I think the effect for Sinn Fein was definitely


that they had to go. There were other things there. Red Sky and


Nama. A list that has been mentioned today. Parra has not been shared,


and the DUP never seemed ready to do that. I don't think that is a


particularly partisan view. The DUP would admit that. It is not a word


that they use easily, in fact rarely, and cumulatively, RHI


definitely playing a part, and the last straw being the DUP cup. Arlene


Foster Sting, is she being seen as a strong lead over by her electorate?


She will be comfortable with Sinn Fein attacking and the language that


Gerry Adams used. That plays very well to the DUP base. It plays well


to the DUP base. Neither of those parties have been comfortable


addressing what has been a huge failure of government on their


watch. They were both partly responsible for this, the DUP much


more culpable. They fail to see this and to stop it. Sinn Fein have known


about this for one year. What has happened in that time and why has


there been no emergency legislation to recoup these costs? That all


falls apart. There will be no inquiry in the short-term and of the


assembly does not come back will there ever be an inquiry? Brother be


an election? It is almost inevitable. Yes, there will be an


election. We have not had much snow so far this winter but that could be


about to change. Cecilia Delie is in the weather studio with -- studio


that although the details. That is the main message this week. It is


going to get much colder during the course of Wednesday. As that cold


air arrives all the way from Canada, it will bring snow showers and


bitterly cold winds which could, in themselves, be a hazard. The hills


catching the worst of the snow, the North and west in particular will


probably see more snow. Stay tuned to the forecast. Warnings have been


issued for strong winds and snow from 6pm on Wednesday. No slow


tonight but there will be some rain for a while. Most of us will escape


the post and ice tonight. In fact, tomorrow is the exception to the


rest of the week. There will be some mild air, and some rain and drizzle


in the morning. But you should not have to scrape your windscreen.


Quite blustery in the morning with a brisk wind along the north coast.


There will be some wet weather, as you can see. Nothing too heavy, but


you will need an umbrella to start the day. It does not last, with a


good chunk of the day brightening up for a time and temperatures in


double figures. During the course of Wednesday it will start to turn


colder with strong winds and driving rain showers through the day, but


those will become increasingly wintry through Wednesday night and


into Thursday. So a reminder, warnings have been issued for strong


winds and snow. Thursday looks to be the worst of the days this week.


Let's go back to Stormont and to Tara Mills. Lots to die just today,


Mark. Any chance of suspension rather than an election -- lots to


digests. As part of the deal that was done in Scotland in 2006, Parra


was taken off the statute book. This present government without do you


use an emergency law to put it back onto the statute book. Government


Celsius indicate they don't intend to do that. They intend to let the


current law take its course. That means an election. What will the key


battles be? You could say every paddle -- every party will be the


loser, they will be going down to one less seat in each constituency


so one, potentially losses all round and the battle lines will be quite


fierce. We have this fierce argument between the main parties over the


RHI scandal and other issues, you can imagine some of the arguments.


And the opposition party saying, these two parties promised a fresh


start. They were going to make everything better. Instead, they


messed things up. All the while, the bills continue to mount up in the


RHI scandal and no sign of any structure of the investigation into


it. That's it from Stormont for this evening. We will have an extended


programme at 10:25pm. For now, we leave you from another day of


uncertainty and drama at Parliament buildings.