Eastwood backs Dallat after ‘campaign of character assassination’

John Dallat
John Dallat

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has said posters that appeared in Greysteel and Coleraine with a disparaging remark about John Dallat “are nothing but a cowardly attempt at character assassination” against the Kilrea man.

The posters appeared in Ballykelly and Greysteel on Tuesday and have since appeared in Coleraine.

Mr. Dallat was not aware of the posters until the ‘Journal’ informed him on Tuesday. He told the ‘Journal’ he was “gutted”, but said he’s since been overwhelmed at the messages of support he’s received.

Mr. Dallat said he forgives whoever is responsible.

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood said today: “John Dallat has been a fierce and fearless champion for the people of East Derry in the most difficult of times. He took a stand at a time when doing so put not only your own life but the lives of your loved ones at risk.

“And over the course of the last twenty years, he has been a vigilant guardian of the public purse. That’s why John has already pledged to pay back the money he received after standing down as an MLA. Because throughout his life, John has put the public interest first and his own personal interests last.

“For all those claiming to want integrity in government - John Dallat’s political career embodies it. The posters that have appeared in Greysteel and Coleraine over the past few weeks are nothing but a cowardly attempt at character assassination against John Dallat.

“Make no mistake about it, in East Derry the choice is clear. It’s Dallat or the DUP. A man who has made power sharing his life’s work or a party that has hollowed out our agreements and brought government to its knees. There’s no better candidate in East Derry than John Dallat.”