19/12/2016

First Minister Apologises RHI Scheme Did Not Have Cost Controls

First Minister Arlene Foster has apologised that the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme did not have cost controls.

Mrs Foster said it is her "deepest political regret" as she spoke at the Assembly on Monday, 19 December.

A number of MLAs from other parties walked out of the chamber during her speech.

However, she said she will not be standing aside from her role as First Minister.

Earlier, deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said he did not approve of Mrs Foster's statement in the chamber.
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He said: "I have already said that a full independent investigation needs to be held into the design, operation and abuse of the RHI scheme. 

"There is no credibility in an Investigation established solely by the DUP or in the selective release of some documents by DUP departments.

"An independent investigation is the only way to establish the truth of what has occurred and to begin to restore public faith in the institutions. That investigation needs to take place urgently.

"We need to establish all the facts and we need to know who benefited from this failed scheme.

"The First Minister should stand aside to allow the investigation to take place in as conducive an atmosphere as possible."

(CD)

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