04/11/2003

SDLP candidate concerned over UUP election strategy

An SDLP candidate for West Belfast has expressed concern that the Ulster Unionist Party’s “charter” is a "DUP-lite" election strategy.

Alex Atwood said: “The issue in this election is the future of the North, not the internal politics of the Ulster Unionist Party.

“Yet David Trimble seems to think that buttering up Jeffrey Donaldson is more important than addressing the concerns of ordinary people.

“Earlier this week we made it clear to the Paisleyites there would be no renegotiation of the agreement. David Trimble needs to know that positioning himself as 'DUP-lite' and promising to wreck inclusive government is going to get him nowhere.

Mr Attwood said it was "about time David Trimble had the courage to stand up to the likes of Jeffrey Donaldson".

He claimed that the previous five years of "dither" was going to leave the UUP leader "high and dry" unless he was "brave enough to take on the hardliners" in the UUP.

(SP)

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