‘London to legislate for RHI but not for rights’ – Heaney

The British Government is prepared to fast track legislation to keep the disastrous RHI scheme open but not implement agreements to guarantee equality and rights for all citizens, Sinn Féin Faughan representative Conor Heaney has said.

He  was speaking after it was announced that British Secretary of State Karen Bradley would rush legislation through Westminster so the controversial renewable energy scheme would be allowed to continue with reduced tariffs.

Conor Heaney  commented: 

“The RHI scheme has become a byword for everything that was wrong in the political system here in the North.  The DUP’s involvement in the RHI scandal drastically undermined public confidence in the power-sharing institutions and led to a shambolic waste of taxpayers’ money.

“Despite this and against our advice to close it, the Department of Economy has decided that it should remain open and the British Government has agreed to fast track legislation for the new tariffs.

“I think most people will find it staggering that the British Government is prepared to introduce legislation for the politically toxic RHI scheme but not on issues like Marriage Equality, Acht Gaeilge, the legacy bodies, inquests and compensation for victims of institutional abuse.

“The British Government is in default of agreements it has made and in default of its responsibilities, along with Dublin, to ensure the equal treatment of all citizens.

“This a la carte approach to our peace and political process again exposes the failure of the British Government to implement agreements and challenge the DUP’s ongoing denial of rights and equality in the North.

“When the London Government pulls out all the stops to ensure the continuation of the toxic RHI scheme but does nothing to ensure the rights of citizens, it says everything about their commitment to the political process here.”