Threat was lifted after mediation

The attendance at Strand Road during the protest over threats against Derry City Council staff earlier this month. DER4614MC072

The attendance at Strand Road during the protest over threats against Derry City Council staff earlier this month. DER4614MC072

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Derry-Strabane Councillors have dismissed claims by a colleague that there was never any death threat issued against community wardens.

The claim was made by Independent Councillor Paul Gallagher after he asked the chief executive of the new Derry City & Strabane District Council, John Kelpie, to review procedures undertaken by Derry City Council to ensure that nothing similar happened in future.

He claimed there had been miscommunications and people “thinking they were under death threat when that wasn’t the case”.

Colr. Gallagher was told however that Mr Kelpie would have no remit to undertake any such review of the other council- which dealt with the matter- but could establish processes for the new supercouncil going forward.

DUP Councillor Gary Middleton said it was “completely ridiculous and ludicrous to accuse the council of misleading the public”, and said any blame lies firmly lies with those who issued the threat.

He added that the ‘IRA’ had put a statement into the Journal making their position clear.

SDLP Councillor Gerard Diver agreed. He said the threat was spelt out clearly in the Derry Journal, adding that the language used by those behind it had “struck terror into the heart of the people of this city”.

Sinn Fein Councillor Paul Fleming said the threat had clearly been real and was lifted later mainly due to the “reaction of this society”.