TUV hits out at Maze comments

THE TUV’s Lagan Valley spokesman Samuel Morrison has hit out at comments by the DUP’s Edwin Poots on the Maze site.

Mr Poots had been responding to a letter in the Star from Mr Morrison on the issue.

Mr Morrison said the letter was remarkable in that the DUP at last decided to answer one point in relation to the plans for the Maze site and detail when the DUP objected to the listing of the prison buildings.

Mr Morrison said: “Why that objection does not feature at all in the documents which deal with the formal listing process remains something of a mystery – as does the fact that Lisburn Council (of which Mr Poots was a member at the time) decided merely to “note” (rather than object to) the listing. There is little point in Mr Poots trumpeting the fact that the DUP objected to the listing before the buildings were listed if that objection had zero impact on the deliberations of the Government agencies involved.”

“If the DUP were so passionate about knocking the buildings down one cannot help wondering what He went on It is interesting that both Mr Poots and Mr Donaldson failed to address the two key questions surrounding the plans for the site which were posed in my letter.

“Firstly, the Maze site is in an ideal location for development with its proximity to the M1 and our ports and airports. Everyone could support its development and the use of it to bring much needed jobs to the area. Why make it a site of controversy by building a huge ‘Conflict Transformation Centre’ right next door to the buildings which housed the people who caused the conflict in the first place?

“Secondly, if, as I agree, the site has huge economic potential why build a centre which is forecast to run at a loss of over £500,000 a year on the site?

“Mr Donaldson denies that his party has had a change of heart in relation to the Maze site. Really?

“On June 22, 2007 Nigel Dodds warned: ‘It is quite clear now the price for Sinn Fein support for the Maze project including the stadium is a shrine to IRA terrorism. However it is dressed up, whatever spin is deployed, the preservation of a section of the H-Blocks - including the hospital wing - would become a shrine to the terrorists who committed suicide in the Maze in the 1980s. That would be obnoxious to the vast majority of people and is something unionist people cannot accept.”

He said Mr Donaldson has described the site as an ‘absolute abomination’.