EAST Derry SDLP Assembly Member John Dallat claims he has enough Union Jacks to organise his own street party!
Another Union Jack was erected on his Limavady office recently, the second in a few weeks. Previously SDLP signs were removed and stolen from his office and flags were erected at his home near Kilrea.
Mr Dallat told the Times: “The SDLP was founded in Limavady forty years ago and I am proud to follow in the footsteps of some of the most honourable people on the Island of Ireland who have represented the ideals of the SDP for the last forty years.
“Those who keep erecting these flags know that and they are very foolish if they believe they are going to intimidate our elected members and volunteers who work out of this office day and daily.
“If this was some sort of pre-St Patrick’s Day stunt then it misrepresented the Christian message of our patron saint who is celebrated by millions people of different beliefs not just here in Ireland but throughout the world.
Mr Dallat added: “John Hume told us many years ago that a man can’t eat a flag and I would urge anyone from either tradition to think seriously about the use of flags and emblems.
“If the national flag, be it British or Irish, can’t be respected, erected on special occasions at dawn and taken down at dusk then it is being seriously disrespected.
“A staggering figure in excess of £20 million as just been squandered to control the so-called ‘flags protest’ while many people don’t have the money to buy food or heat their homes. What on earth are those involved thinking about?
“My offices in Limavady and Kilrea are helping those people day and daily and our staff and councillors don’t ask what flag they support or what party they vote for. It is neutral territory and that is the way it will stay. The flag comes down.”