Friday, 21 November 2008

New Conservative and Unionist Political Force Created

I'll be posting more on last night's historic decision later, but I thought it would be useful to reproduce the summary version of last night's UUP / Conservative party agreement, as carried on the Conservative NI blog (PDF). This document contains the important detail.

1. The Conservatives and the Ulster Unionists have agreed to form a Joint Committee which will have as a core aim a desire to change politics in Northern Ireland in order to enable all electors in Northern Ireland to participate fully in the politics of the United Kingdom

2. The Joint Committee (consisting of 4 Conservatives and 4 Unionists) oversees developments. It will be responsible (for) coordinating the identification of candidates for the General Election and have responsibility for running the European and General Election campaigns.

3. Jim Nicholson MEP will be the candidate for the European election and, if elected, will sit as a full member of the Conservative group, and shall be in receipt of the Conservative Whip in the next European Parliament. He shall have the same rights and responsibilities of all MEPs taking the Conservative Whip.

4. Successful candidates at the General Election will be full members of the Parliamentary Conservative Party. They will have the same rights and responsibilities as all other MPs taking the Conservative Whip.

5. Both Parties recognise that the holding of office as a Member of Parliament, Member of the European Parliament, or Member of a Legislative Assembly, is a full-time position. Both Parties consider the holding of multiple mandates to be undesirable and neglectful of the needs of the electorate. Accordingly, the holding of joint mandates will not be permitted. If an MLA offers him/her self as a candidate for a Parliamentary seat they will undertake to resign as an MLA on election to that Parliament.


Anonymous said...

Wow it is clear this is much more than a pact. Does it mean merger is the likely eventual outcome?

fair_deal said...

Question for clarification - I see they take the whip, does that mean they run on the same manifesto? or does the Joint Committee develop a NI specific one?

Michael Shilliday said...

Both seems the most likely answer FD.

Anonymous said...

FD, Michael
The Conservative Party will have a national manifesto and the candidates will run on it but there will be a local mainfesto too (as in Scotland and Wales)
Hopefully we will be able to work together to devise some distinct and exciting policies that complement this national agenda.
This is what this is all about - developing a Conservative and Unionist New Force that will enable local people to play a full part in UK politics - and that includes making sure our Northern Ireland interests are not overlooked
Bob Wilson
Bob Wilson

fair_deal said...

Thanks MS and BW