Bookmark and Share

Electoral Commission Publish Parties' Finances

New figures released by the Electoral Commission have revealed the financial accounts of Northern Ireland's political parties.

In the last year, Sinn Fein posted a loss of £63,868 – the largest loss of all the parties. It spent more than £240,000 with a court settlement and legal fees. A total of £161,860 was paid by the party for legal and professional fees, while there was an outlay of £80,000 for a court settlement following the case last year when Belfast High Court ruled the party had libelled a former director of NI Water.

Declan Gormley was awarded £80,000 plus costs after suing the party over the contents of two press statements about his dismissal from the organisation.

Elsewhere in the report, the SDLP also recorded a loss for 2012, and while the DUP and Alliance saw their income fall from the previous year, both parties posted a surplus.

The UUP was the only party to record an income increase from the previous year.
News Image
Despite its losses, Sinn Fein remains the wealthiest part in NI bringing in £1,090,792 in 2012.

The Electoral Commission published the accounts of parties whose income reached £250,000 or more.

In 2012, the SDLP's income was £338,177, while it spent £351,622 - a deficit of £13,445.

The DUP record an income of £479,360 and spent £293,908 - a surplus of £185,452.

While the UUP's income was £381,404 and its outgoings totalled £366,057 - a surplus of £15,347.

Earlier this year, the Commission said the Alliance Party's income was £197,490, with an expenditure of £124,740 - a surplus of £72,750.

Peter Horne, Director of Party and Election Finance said: "We are pleased that, for the second year running, all the larger political parties have submitted accounts to us by the statutory deadline. We have been working with parties to achieve this over a number of years.

"It is essential that parties continue to be transparent with their financial information so voters can see exactly how they are funded and how this money is spent."


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

13 April 2015
SDLP Supports Assembly Commission Proposals
The SDLP has endorsed a 3% cut to party financing by the Assembly commission. Mr Pat Ramsey said that it's important that parties share the pain of cuts.
31 January 2005
Prime Minister and Taoiseach meet to discuss way ahead
Prime Minister Tony Blair and Taoiseach Bertie Ahern will meet in London on Tuesday to discuss the way ahead in the Northern Ireland peace process. The meeting follows separate discussions by both premiers with Sinn Fein and other political parties last week.
04 May 2006
Government reveal NI poverty statistics
A government report has today revealed that approximately half of Northern Ireland’s population have incomes less than £300 per week. The report, entitled 'Households Below Average Income, Northern Ireland, 2004-05,' covered the period of April 2004 to March 2005.
03 September 2013
Independent Schools To Receive Free Meals
Free school meals will be extended to independent schools across Northern Ireland for the first time this year. The extension of entitlement will ensure pupils at 15 local independent schools can avail of the support, as well as pupils at grant-aided schools.
28 January 2013
Three People Convicted Of Benefit Fraud
Three people have been convicted at L'Derry Magistrates Court for claiming benefits they were not entitled to. Michael Benson (24) of Bonds Hill, L'Derry claimed Income Support and Housing Benefit totalling £4,682 while failing to declare employment. He was given 120 hours Community Service, fined £100 and ordered to pay court costs of £43.
25 April 2012
NI Families Hit More By Cost Of Essentials Compared To The Rest Of UK
Families in Northern Ireland are the most impacted with the cost of essentials making up a larger proportion of family budgets, according to the latest Asda Income Tracker. Families in NI had just £83 a week of discretionary income in the first quarter of this year, just over half of the national average.
18 August 2011
Criminals Sentenced For Benefit Fraud
A man was convicted at Belfast Magistrates' court on Wednesday for claiming benefits he was not entitled to. Raymond Crooks, 52, of Bentinck Street, Belfast was given three months imprisonment suspended for two years and ordered to pay court costs of £22 for wrongful encashment of Employment Support Allowance totalling £173.
24 June 2011
Benefit Frauds Fined And Sentenced
Five people were convicted at Lisburn Magistrates' court this week for claiming benefits they were not entitled to. Damien Laverty (34) of Glenbaw Park, Dunmurry claimed Jobseekers Allowance totalling £6,746 while failing to declare employment. He was given a four-month prison sentence suspended for two years and ordered to pay court costs of £40.
07 April 2011
Benefit Fraudsters Given Prison Terms
Two people have been handed down prison sentences for separate cases of benefit fraud. A woman was convicted at Dungannon Magistrates' court earlier this week for claiming benefits she was not entitled to. She is Mary Campbell, 52, of Loughview Gardens, Coalisland, Co Tyrone.
24 February 2011
Suspended Prison Term For Fraudster
Nine people were convicted of benefit fraud at Belfast Magistrates' court this week for claiming benefits they were not entitled to - with one handed a jail term. Colin McGookin (52) of Sheringhurst Park, Belfast claimed Income Support, Incapacity Benefit and Disability Living Allowance totalling £25,168 while failing to declare employment.
16 February 2011
Benefit Frauds Face Court Sanctions
Fraudsters are being made to pay the price for claiming a variety of benefits they were not entitled to. A total of 14 people were convicted at Belfast Magistrates' court yesterday with Joanne McBride (35) of Portallo Street, Belfast claiming Income Support totalling £4,451 while failing to declare she was working.
25 June 2004
Low income families providing poor diet for children
A new report has found that parents on a low income are struggling to find enough money for food good enough for a healthy diet. The report, by leading children's charity NCH, said that because of the financial burden on low income families children's diets were becoming nutritionally poor.
03 July 2003
NI pensioners missing out on millions
Millions of pounds worth of benefits are lying unclaimed by Northern Ireland's pensioners, a new report has revealed.
24 June 2003
NI people mentally 'affected by 'Troubles'
A new survey has found that the mental health of people across Northern Ireland has been significantly affected by the 'Troubles' over the past 30 years. The survey, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health on Tuesday, questioned nearly 1,700 people aged between 16 and 64.
28 March 2002
Pensioners urged to claim all their benefit entitlements
The Minister for Social Development, Nigel Dodds, has urged pensioners to go out and claim all the social benefits to which they are entitled.