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All Speeches

  • Councillor Neil Kelly
    April 2013

    Alliance Councillor Neil Kelly condemned the discovery of a pipe bomb following a security alert in Antrim.

    He highlighted his concern after a number of houses in Mallusk Gardens were evacuated on Wednesday, with Army bomb experts called in to examine the suspicious object.

    Cllr Neil Kelly said, "I completely condemn this incident. It was a reckless act that put lives at great risk in a residential area and forced people to evacuate their homes.

  • David Ford on conference platform
    March 2013
    By David Ford MLA, Leader of the Alliance Party

    "I would like to welcome you all to Conference. Welcome to those who have suffered intimidation, threats and attacks in recent weeks because you did what was right.

    "Welcome and thank you to Naomi and Michael, to Judith Cochrane, Chris Lyttle and the entire East Belfast team. To Linda Cleland and Gerardine Mulvenna. To Stewart and his team in Carrickfergus. To Stephen and the North Down team, especially Christine, Michael and Grace Bower.

  • David Ford
    January 2013
    By David Ford MLA

    Today I called on politicians not to feed fear but to resolve issues that creates fear, during a 'Matter of the Day' debate in the Northern Ireland Assembly on the recent violence.

    Speaking in the Assembly I said, "The current violence is the end of a line that began last summer when rulings of the Parade's Commission were openly defied. Then in the autumn we saw 40,000 inflammatory leaflets distributed by Unionists that stirred up tensions.

  • March 2012
    By David Ford MLA, Minister of Justice in Northern Ireland Assembly

    In my statement to the House in October last year to welcome the publication of the final report of the prison review team, I stated that the next six months would be critical to this programme of reform. I am clear that full implementation of the prison review team's recommendations will take years, rather than months, and will require change across the system of government as well as within the Prison Service. However, I believe that the progress made in the past six months proves that the change we are embarked upon is transformational in scale and nature, is being tackled with pace and vigour and is irrevocable in its outcome.

  • March 2012
    By David Ford MLA in Northern Ireland Assembly

    I congratulate my colleague Danny Kinahan on securing the debate, and I declare an interest as a member of the church committee of Second Donegore Presbyterian Church, which abuts the site. In that context, I correct Danny slightly. He said that the quarry had not been worked for 40 years. I can confirm that there was at least one blast in the face of the quarry on a day in June 1975, because it happened during my wedding ceremony. At that point, all the Fords jumped up because, whatever part of the country they came from, they were unaware that there was a working quarry down the road. All my in-laws said, "Oh there they go again". However, it was certainly very shortly after that in the early 1980s that the quarry ceased to be used, and it has been effectively abandoned since then. I believe that, under the ROMP legislation, it should be regarded as abandoned. Indeed, its most recent use was as a film set, which I suspect is not particularly good as a precedent for a waste transfer station.

  • October 2011
    By David Ford MLA, Minister of Justice in Northern Ireland Assembly

    "I welcome the Assembly's interest in this matter. I begin by congratulating the Members who secured this useful debate. Fuel fraud must be of concern to us all. Given its impact on the environment and the end user, and the loss of revenue to legitimate trade and to the Exchequer, it is of interest to Members. It is also of interest to Westminster, where the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee has an inquiry under way, a point that Mr Irwin highlighted at the beginning of the debate. I expect to give evidence to that inquiry in the near future. Debates such as this and that inquiry will serve as useful assessments of our response to fuel fraud and will help to identify where that response can be enhanced.

  • Alliance Party leading change 2011
    April 2011
    By David Ford, Leader of the Alliance Party in Launch of the Alliance Party manifesto for the 2011 Assembly election

    Good afternoon. Two weeks ago, as we launched our campaign for the Assembly and Local Government elections on 5th of May, I promised that in the course of the campaign we would present our most comprehensive policy manifesto ever. Today we deliver on that promise.

    And I believe that when people read the document they will see that not only is it Alliance's most comprehensive manifesto ever, but it is the most comprehensive and ambitious manifesto ever presented by any political party in Northern Ireland.

  • January 2011
    By David Ford MLA in Alliance Party Conference, 2011

    What a difference a year makes. When I was thinking about this Conference, my tenth as Party Leader, I decided to look back at last year's speech, so see what had changed - and to see whether I had made any dangerous promises or predictions that might come back to haunt me.

    First of all, the speech was entitled "delivering responsible government". Not a bad start, a week before the Hillsborough Castle Talks that led to the devolution of Justice in April.

  • June 2010
    By Justice Minister David Ford

    The report further stated that no member of the Reavey family had any verified links to any paramilitary group, which is contrary to later speculation. I know, from the meeting in May, about the particular hurt that has been caused to Eugene Reavey by the repetition of that speculation. This afternoon, Mr Bradley and other Members referred to the feelings of Mr Reavey's mother. We all wish those feelings to be taken into account.

  • June 2010
    By Justice Minister David Ford

    I wish to make a statement on the review of the conditions of detention, management and oversight of all prisons. As the House will be aware, the review is an action that was identified in the Hillsborough agreement of 5 February 2010 for inclusion in the addendum to the Programme for Government. Although I gave the Committee for Justice a summary of my intentions in regard to the review when I appeared before it, it is right that I should report its composition and terms of reference in the Chamber.