‘Desperate SDLP covering its own failings’ – McCartney

An increasingly desperate SDLP is attempting to cover up its own failings by constantly attacking others, Sinn Féin MLA Raymond McCartney has said.

The Foyle MLA was speaking after SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood claimed the Executive had routinely failed to deliver for Derry.

“It’s quite ironic for Colum Eastwood to accuse others of failing Derry when the SDLP was the lead party in this city for decades, during which time the north west was shamefully neglected,” Raymond McCartney commented.

“It is only since Sinn Féin became the biggest party that we have seen real progress on the key strategic issues that need to be developed such as our roads infrastructure, health provision and the expansion of the university.

“We would all love to see more and quicker progress but I think most people accept it will take time to rectify the generations of institutional neglect which happened on the SDLP’s watch.

“But even this progress has come in the face of constant SDLP opposition. They opposed the budget that that provided the funds for the A5 and the A6. They opposed the budget that provided the funds for the initial expansion at Magee. They opposed the budget that provided the funds for the cancer centre at Altnagelvin and regeneration of the Ebrington site.

“Not once did they provide a credible alternative proposal.

“I could go on because the SDLP have opposed every single budget since they lost their status as the largest nationalist party.

“That is not political leadership. That is an abdication of leadership and the SDLP’s constant attacks on everyone else are nothing more than an increasingly desperate attempt to deflect public attention from their own failings over many, many years.

“Even if Colum doesn’t realise that, the electorate clearly do which is why they elected Elisha McCallion as the MP.”