10/01/2017 BBC Newsline


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You're watching BBC Newsline and once again our main focus


The former First Minister Arlene predicts that


an election will be brutal, but she hopes an independent inquiry


into the renewable heat scandal can be set up within the next 24 hours.


It is needed to restore the confidence in the institutions and


also for me personally to be able to regain my integrity which has been


temptingly maligned but this past number of weeks.


The Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams warns there can be no


We get reaction from business and community groups to the potential


collapse of the Northern Ireland executive. I think the losers in


this process are the people, the citizens and in particular those


citizens that were so badly affected by the troubles.


A farmer tells us he fears his industry


is being demonised over the renewable heat scandal:


a couple admit helping the murderers of a Chinese restaurant owner.


And it's going to get much colder over the coming days


with a bitter northwest wind and some snow.


An Assembly election hasn't been called yet but the DUP leader


Arlene Foster say if it goes ahead, it will be "brutal."


She has also said she hopes an independent inquiry


into the controversial heating scheme could start within 24 hours.


The resignation of Martin McGuinness as the Deputy First Minister has


sparked yet another Stormont crisis and as our political correspondent


Gareth Gordon reports, no one is quite sure what will happen next.


Stormont today after. More dark clouds then rays of light but all


pointing towards an election. And soon it will be about seats. Not


these one stacked in the great Hall but the ones which we knew a place


in the assembly chamber across Europe. The last poll how is barely


over. The next one unlikely to be pretty. I have no doubt that if the


election proceeds, it will be a brutal election. It will be a very


difficult election and with Sinn Fein hat indicating that they're not


going back to see disco, there are those of us who will also want to


look at the construction of the institutions to see what we can do


better because I think that there is no doubt, if you look back at our


documents from 2003 row forward, we always said mandatory coalition as a


first step towards moving to voluntary coalition and so we will


want to look those issues as well after an election, if it takes


place. So, undoubtedly, we're in for a period of direct rule. 24 hours


after her partner in Government told her he was leaving, Arlene Foster


sprung a surprise. It public inquiry into the heating scandal could be


called soon. We're very keen that it is set up for all the reasons I have


set out. The fact that from a political point of view I think it


is needed to restore the confidence in the institutions and also for me


personally to be able to regain my integrity which has been constantly


maligned over this past number of weeks and months so it's important


that we get this inquiry up and running as quickly as possible and I


hope it'll be in place before the end of the week. Too late impress


Sinn Fein. Martin McGuinness thanked well-wishers. Whether his health


issues will allow him to even run an election is not clear but others are


ready. We've had two max uprising elections, Brexit and the in the


American election. I think we have unprecedented anger about this


scandal waiting there are so many unknowns that there is all to play


for if we go to an election and we will go on very confidently. What


should be happening now is the Secretary of State and the Irish


Foreign Minister should be convening talks with all five parties, not


just with the two that have caused the problems of last 14 months, to


see what we can do to reform the structures before we have the


election campaign. The next steps as uncertain as Stormont 's future.


Tara Mills spoke to the Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams that


afternoon. She asked him about the DUP's suggestion that there could be


a lengthy period of directional. Directional cannot be an option.


That if there is no agreement between the two biggest parties,


legally there has to be direct rule. First of all, the situation has


moved on tremendously. We are facing Brexit, you know. DUP for this part


of the islands, contrary to the wishes of the majority of people,


want to exit from the European Union so there is a challenge. So, you


see, if you're against half a billion of money being flushed down


the drain for possibly into someone's pocket, if you are against


that, if you are for fairness and equality, if you value the progress


that has been made, and unionist leaders have played a role in that


process, if you want that to continue, then come out and vote and


vote accordingly to make sure that the institutions that are put in


place will be sustainable and will be based upon fairness, decency,


good manners and equality. But what you've done means the money is going


to go down the drain until the election process is completed and it


also means that there can't be a short-term inquiry as the one you


had suggested. That could take years, so you have undoubtedly got


what she wanted or what you set out to get. And that's why Martin felt


that his position was untenable. What are the other consequences of


Martin McGuinness resigning is that there is no voice, there is a


nationalist voice in the Brexit negotiations because you don't have


a voice at Westminster, so we are totally detached. You have detached


electorate away from the Brexit negotiations. Our voices loud and


clear. We published a document strategy on Brexit, we have argued


for the North to be treated with a special designated status... If


you're not there, how can you hope... We couldn't get that done


anyway because the DUP are for Brexit and against the majority vote


which says that the people want to remain within the European Union.


Just a number of final quick points. Martin McGuinness, some commentators


have suggested it is actually your influence that has taken a harder


line here and that if it had been entirely up to Martin McGuinness,


there wouldn't have been resignation. It was from Martin


McGuinness. In terms of itself, are you worried about him? Absolutely. I


was with him at the castle just before the interviews. I found it


very emotional as a period. He obviously is ill. He's very


resilient. He's getting very, very best medical treatment so hopefully


people praying, and they should pray, hopefully he won't back to


himself before too long. Gerry Adams. It is the job of the


Secretary of State to call a election. In the House of Commons,


he outlined his thoughts. There was a nearly a full house


from our local MPs in the Commons for this debate and afterwards


I caught up with a number of them. MPs from all parties gathered to


hear the Secretary of State, who knows his options and time for


decision making is limited. The clock is ticking. If there is no


resolution that an election is inevitable. Despite the widely held


view that this election may deepen divisions and threatened the


continuity of the devolved institutions. And there was a


warning that an election could lead to political deadlock. This could


last for months. I think were looking at weeks, months, maybe even


years. If Sinn Fein continue on the line that they're on now. Just to


clarify, years of direct rule? Well, if Sinn Fein are going to turn their


back on power sharing and on the agreements that have previously been


reached, then directional is the inevitable controversies of that. On


the Labour benches, there was a feeling that an election was not the


solution to Stormont's problems. I just don't believe that what were


going into now will resolve anything in any shape or form. You think


election will solve anything? Reed no one has convinced me that it will


do anything. We will have a result at the end of that which the only


change will be the number in the seven rumbled reduced from 108 to


90. Others insist the electorate should


use an electorate to -- an election to judge the record of the DUP and


particularly Sinn Fein. Now they have to tell the truth about the DUP


but of course the DUP have got their own point about Sinn Fein as well so


be brought public have decisions and choices to make if there is to be an


election. Even at this late stage, there is some hope that an election


won't be necessary. It is certainly avoidable if everyone sits around


the table. That is what the Secretary of State said he would do


was sit around with everyone I talk to everyone. It is avoidable but not


if we carry on in the same way we have been doing things. At


Westminster, there is much surprise and sombre wonderment at how events


at Stormont have unfolded in the last 24 hours. And whilst they have


heard appeals from talks and solutions, there is a growing


feeling that the parties in Northern Ireland will be on the campaign


Trail within days. After today's debate


the Secretary of State returned And he is going to spend the next


few days talking to the parties Former First and Deputy


First Ministers have been giving their thoughts


on the current crisis at Stormont. The Ulster Unionist, Lord Trimble,


says an election probably won't change the dominance


on the two main parties but that disillusioned voters at least now


have an alternative. The SDLP's Seamus Mallon says


the fault for the current problems lies squarely with both


Arlene Foster and Martin McGuinness. The easy way out of this is to blame


the institutions, not to blame the people who didn't bring integrity


and a sense of justice and a sense of belonging and reconciliation to


the whole process. I can't remember a time when the whole question of


reconciliation was addressed in that assembly. Was addressed by beef


first and Deputy First Minister. Today marks the deadline for those


on the renewable heating initiative scheme to say if their details


can be published. A former president of


the Ulster Farmers Unions says he fears boiler owners like him


will be "demonised" John Gilliland also warned


the government against tearing up the contracts of those who signed up


to the scheme. Our political correspondent


Enda McClafferty has been speaking to Mr Gilliland


on his farm in Londonderry. As you can see, this is our willow.


A year after harvest... When it comes to renewable energy, few can


both a track record like John Gilleland. He installed his first


biomass boiler 30 years ago and now supplies woodchip from his willow


crop to is all over Northern Ireland. Come to this boiler and I


will permit obsolete Ashley C B woodchip. He has three boilers


drying woodchip around the clock for which he gets paid ?80,000 a year


from the RHI scheme. 30,000 of which is profit which he says he uses to


pay off debts from his renewable investments. I encourage many, many


people to go into renewable heat, but there are really scared at the


moment. They're scared of being victimised, have been made a pariah


in their own community. I think the Government needs to be genuine and


before they release names at least allow them to be inspected and


approved to the public that they're doing it above board so that when


the wet woodchip comes in it goes on the special floor. This is where the


warm air from the boiler comes up through, underneath the woodchip.


This is close off at the moment and it drives the moisture out and you


can see the water vapour coming out of the woodchip and we extracted out


of... John Gilliland expects to be one of the few to go public and he


is warned the Government against taking money from those like him who


signed up in good faith. When you write a legal contract and you sign


a legal contract, there are responsibilities on both parties to


deliver the spirit of that contract. If governments then tears up 2000


contracts, what other contracts are they don't want a terrible? They


create a very dangerous precedent. John Gilliland, like hundreds of


other boiler owners, is now waiting to see if his contract will be


scrapped and his money cuts. But a bigger conserver hemp is the


long-term damage on future green energy schemes in Northern Ireland


and that's something he says he can't surprise on. -- can't put a


price on. The knock-on effect of having no


functioning Executive could be far Sara Neill has been been speaking


to some of the groups who believe they could be left dealing


with the fall out. For many nationalists, the straw


that broke the camel 's back was the withdrawal of funding to the Irish


language scheme. It targeted the most marginalised with in the


community, people who couldn't afford to send their children,


people who couldn't attend to themselves. This is who the target.


You're talking about pennies in terms of the overall budget and it


was seen as crass and as an outrageous attack. As I said, almost


as valid people. The findings of the as oracle institution of query


allegedly made public later this month but without a solid


Government, victims say they are the real losers, a sentiment echoed by


those affected by the Troubles. We just don't want to believe that as


soon as Sir Anthony's report was ready and delivered on Friday, that


the collapse of the Government and the collapse of our dreams and hopes


and desires that this was going to be our day. I think the losers in


this process are the people, either citizens and in particular those


citizens that were so badly affected by the Troubles and lost loved ones,


lost limbs and they were having some sort of hopes raised by the Stormont


agreement on some of the things coming down the line from that. We


were assured it would be a fresh start and now the whole thing is


that we unravelled. In business, we know that markets hate uncertainty


and it is feared that this political instability could cast a shadow over


economic growth and later a slowdown in the construction industry. The


industry was already in a very fragile position, beginning to make


a recovery after ten long years and that just adds further uncertainty


to an industry that quite frankly can play a very important role in


economic growth so were very concerned. I've never seen a time


when we need strong leadership more than we do now in advance of Article


50 being triggered in March. We need to have that Northern Ireland voice


out there, we had very unique circumstances that the rest of the


UK do not face and who is going to be talking for us at those


negotiations? In the second week of January, little more than 24 hours


after Martin McGuinness stepped down, it's still not clear what lies


in store for the people of Northern Ireland and if there is an election,


what change that could bring. What is clear is that the events of


yesterday at Stormont will be felt long into 2017.


Our economics and business editor John Campbell is here in the studio


and our political editor Mark Devenport is at


Two Stormont first. What do you make of the claim that we could be facing


a lengthy period of directional? Well, it seems logical even though


Gerry Adams said earlier in the programme that that was not an


option. If we do have an extensive negotiation after an election, then


there really will be very little alternative but for the Government


to step in and to administer Northern Ireland directly. That


could mean different things in terms of policies. Maybe they could bring


in same-sex marriage as they have elsewhere in the UK, maybe we could


get more austerity measures, perhaps the bedroom tax without some of the


mitigation that had been planned unless they get those measures in


place. But in general, is not really a perfect system of Government


having London-based ministers flying in just a few days and civil


servants really administering the place on a sort of ticking over


caretaker type pieces. John, let's look at the Stormont finances. What


will that vacuum do? Just to pick up on something Mark said there, about


the bedroom tax. That was a policy introduced by Westminster saying


that people living in social housing could have the housing benefits


reduced if it was felt they had too much space, too many legends. Under


the fresh start agreement, Stormont agreed to mitigate that is so in


effect the betting tax would not apply here. However, for that policy


to take effect, a piece of legislation needs to go through


Stormont and the important thing is that piece of legislation has not


yet gone through. So the housing right organisation are warning that


come next month, come the middle of next month, more than 30,000


households could unexpectedly be paying the betting tax which means


on average they would lose about ?20 a week in housing benefit. I imagine


it will be good fun for the parties to try and explain that if they are


campaigning on the doorsteps. We heard a business represents to talk


about Brexit there in an earlier report. What difference will it make


that we do not have executive ministers involved in the Brexit


negotiations? There's something Cobbe joint ministerial committee


which means each devolved administration comes together and


meet with the Government in London and they are meant to feed into


those Brexit talks. It looks unlikely that we will be


representative to the stocks so in effect, our representative, the


present looking ever Northern Ireland, is going to be James Brooke


and Shire, the MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup. Back to you Mark and to the


keys renewable incentive scheme. What you make from the line from


Ivan Foster who says she is willing to fast track in inquiry into the


scheme? Under the 2005 enquiries act, any DUP ministers who still


remain in place until midnight on the exception of Arlene Foster have


the ability to put into place and inquiry. They could all Institute


and inquiry, but I have to say that opposition parties have given as a


dusty response Colling at electioneering or making Northern


Ireland a lasting spot will have to see if this becomes a reality in the


next few days. John Campbell in the studio and Mark Davenport are


political editor at Stormont. A County Antrim husband and wife


have admitted helping the murderers of a Chinese restaurant owner


try to cover up the killing. Wing Fu Cheung - also


known as Nelson Cheung - was stabbed to death outside


Randalstown in 2015. Four people have now been convicted


in connection with the killing. Our north-east reporter Sara Girvin


was at Belfast Crown Court. Nelson Cheung was on his way home to


Ballymena after closing his restaurant for the night. His


attackers forced his car off the road on the outskirts of Randall


Stout, stabbed him 17 times. His wife was injured during the robbery


and her handbag, which contained a full and ?200, was stolen. Following


her husband's murder, she left Northern Ireland and watched today's


court proceedings in Belfast from Hong Kong. Gary and Lisa Thomson had


previously denied all charges against them but entered new guilty


pleas as their trial was about to begin. Both admitted assisting


offenders by allowing two men who have already pleaded guilty to


Nelson Cheung's murder to use their home as a refuge, remove clothing


and preen themselves after the killing. Gary Thompson was


previously accused of Mr Cheung's murder but that charge was left on


the books. The couple also admitted perverting the course of justice


while Gary Thompson pleaded guilty to robbery and Lisa Thomson to


handling stolen goods. The two other men who admitted Mr Cheung's murder


late last year are in custody awaiting sentence. Following their


guilty pleas, Gary and Lisa Thompson were released on continuing bail.


They will be sentenced at a later date.


An inspection report on De La Salle College


in Belfast says arrangements for safeguarding its pupils


The Education and Training Inspectorate also found that staff


at the school had been absent for an average of 40 days each


during the last school year, as our education correspondent


It was business as usual for the education Minister Peter Weir at


Corpus Christi College in West Belfast this morning. Seeing and


hearing how partnerships between schools there have really raised


standards in the classroom. But not far away, it has been another grey


day for the college, one of the county's largest primary schools.


The inspector said that arrangements for protecting peoples was


unsatisfactory. Teaching and assessment required significant


improvement, a culture of bullying led to vulnerable and stressed staff


and that they had limited confidence in the school governors. The


inspection did say there have been some improvements since last


September but is the culmination of over a year where there have been


disputes among staff here and periods were a significant number of


teachers have been off sick and protests by some parents. The local


MP is worried. The Inspector's report is a hard-hitting report. We


need to learn from it. We need to move on and we need to make sure


that education and the inspector's report next year shows massive


improvement. Despite the good news at Corpus Christi, the Lasalle was


also on the mind of the education minister. We've put in special


measures. Those of is the word loosely put in and indeed we are


committed to doing that work. In a statement this afternoon, a


spokesperson said they would take action to address the concerns


highlighted by the inspectors. Golf and Rory McIlroy says


he will probably not compete McIlroy has indicated that


conflicting loyalties make him uncomfortable with declaring to be


part of either a Great Britain Last year, McIlroy opted


to represent Ireland, before pulling out of Rio Games


because of concerns I'm a very conflicted person and not


a lot of people understand that maybe, but it's just the way I feel


and I know that some people, or most people, think that that is wrong.


But it's the way I feel and I can't really help it, I guess. You know,


more and more likely that I'll be going to the games -- more and more


unlikely that I'll be going to the games. Not bad feelings towards the


games and I think golf included in the games is fantastic, but just


throw me, it's something that I just don't want to get into and, you


know, that's a personal choice and hopefully people respect that


decision and it's a decision that I have not taken lightly. A decision


that I have with myself over for so many years and I hope it goes even


better in 2020. You know, I just won't be a part of it. If it upsets


some people, that's OK. I can't please everyone, but at least I keep


saying as long as I'm true to myself, I'll be happy. 's


Rugby and back row forward Chris Henry has signed


The 32-year-old Ireland international,


who's been hampered by injury and illness over the past


two seasons, will now remain at the Kingspan Stadium


Cecilia Daly is here with the weather forecast.


I suspect is going to get even colder.


Colder and windier and people have already noticed the wind picking up


today. Today we had debited up to 11 or 12 degrees. Those figures will be


cut and have to moral and add on an even stronger wind which will make


it feel absolutely better. At the moment, not particularly cold. There


will be damp weather around for awhile but after midnight, we will


find that the wind strengthening with gales, severe gales coming up


the coast. Showers coming into the North West as well and temperatures


in the south-east could get low enough for perhaps one or two icy


spots. So the main feature in Italy of the weather is going to be a very


strong, cold wind so much colder tomorrow and much windier. But there


will also be some dry and bright weather around and some sunshine.


And there will be some showers. We are mostly looking at rain showers


during the day tomorrow so first thing, temperatures around 5 degrees


but feeling much colder in those very blustery winds. There will also


be some sunshine and dry weather at times, particularly across the East


and south-east. A day of sunshine and showers but very strong winds


and winds could well cause some damage. Especially in the north and


west. Could be some thunder mixed in with some heavy showers as well.


Tomorrow evening, that's when the error gets cold enough for those


showers to turn more and more to snow. So through Wednesday night and


through the rest of Wednesday and Thursday, we will be looking at


snow, cold, windy weather and also ice. You can see on the chart,


temperatures not only fall to around freezing or below but also more and


more in the way of white stuff. By Thursday morning, there could be


some lying snow in places which could well cause some disruption.


There will be further wintry showers, a real mix of showers


really, through the fee next few days. Most of the lying still on the


high ground of the north and west but there could be lying snow just


about anywhere over the next couple of days so it certainly is a couple


of days to come that will feel bitterly cold, you'll need to wrap


up warm. And really strong wind. By the end of Thursday, there could be


a couple of inches or more, especially over the high ground in


the north and west but really through Thursday and Friday, a bit


of snow is possible just about anywhere and it will feel better.


And the first significant snowfall Billy the winter.


That's right, I really easy winter so far so some say we were Jewett.


-- June for some snow. of our local hospitals and