Paisley Jnr Defends 'Three Paycheck' Controversy

The Assembly Junior Minister, MLA, and Assistant to Paisley Snr at Westminster, Ian Paisley Jnr, has spoken out in defence of his present 'triple whammy' of government offices.

Reports earlier this week revealed that Paisley Jnr, on top of his two Stormont positions, was also on his father’s House of Commons payroll as a parliamentary assistant, totaling three paychecks from the public purse.

The controversy details came to light after a crack-down on payments to family members was sparked by an investigation into Tory MP Derek Conway’s research payments to his son.

However, Ian Paisley Jnr yesterday said he had worked with his father for 20 years, and had declared the role in the Assembly's register of interests since 1998.

MLA’s and MP’s are entitled to employ family members under Westminster and Assembly rules.

He also said: "I have never once received a complaint about my work or my work rate and the people I interact with have extremely pressing problems and they receive an efficient and effective service."

Mr Paisley Jnr’s statement came after the Chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, Sir Alistair Graham, said: "I would call on him to explain to the people at large how much public funding he's actually been accessing, so that taxpayers can determine whether they are getting value for money."

SDLP MLA Declan O'Loan, in response to the revelations, said: "There are fundamental unanswered questions on the level of payments and the hours involved."

Mr Paisley Jnr’s two Assembly posts as an MLA and a Junior Minister in his father's department earn him some £60,000 a year.


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

12 April 2019
Police Slam 'Reckless' Attacks On Public Transport
Police have hit out after two attacks on public transport in west Belfast when bricks were thrown through the windows of buses. The incidents occurred on the evening of Wednesday 10 April between 5pm and 10pm in the Stewartstown Road and Lenadoon Avenue areas of the city.
03 April 2019
PHA In Public Appeal To Vaccinate Against MMR
The Public Health Agency (PHA) is raising awareness of the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine through a new social media video. The campaign comes after a recent measles outbreak in Europe. The disease has continued to circulate due to lower levels of MMR vaccine uptake in children and young people in some countries.
03 April 2019
Public Urged To Support Autism Awareness Week
An SDLP MLA is urging members of the public to support Autism Awareness Week, which is currently running until Sunday 07 April. Mark H Durkan, the party's Health Spokesperson, said the initiative is the perfect opportunity to raise awareness and public understanding of what life is like for those with the developmental disorder.
02 April 2019
Renewed PSNI Appeal Amid ATM Thefts
A senior PSNI detective has issued a fresh appeal to the public to help catch the criminals behind the recent spate of ATM thefts across Northern Ireland. It comes in the wake of the seventh incident this year, when a stolen digger was used to rip a cash machine from the wall of a shop in Ahoghill, County Antrim yesterday morning, 01 April.
29 March 2019
Surge In Support For Breastfeeding Mums At NI Businesses
The Public Health Agency (PHA) has reported a significant rise in the number of businesses across Northern Ireland displaying their support for breastfeeding mothers.