Poster ban call for East Derry ahead of March 2 election

UUP Assembly candidate William McCandless
UUP Assembly candidate William McCandless

They’re unsightly and potentially very dangerous according to one Assembly candidate in East Derry who hopes other Stormont hopefuls in the constituency will share his view.

William McCandless, who is making a bid for an Assembly seat for the second time, is calling for a poster ban prior to “an election no-one wants.”

The Causeway Coast & Glens councillor said yesterday apart from how they look: “It’s also a health and safety issue. You take today, it’s blustery, and if one of those posters came off and hit you they’d slice you in two.”

Colr. McCandless, who has been selected as the East Derry candidate for the Ulster Unionist Party and is expected to be ratified at a meeting of the party tonight, revealed he’s suffered a few cuts to his fingers in the past due to the posters. He said so far, however, there have been “no takers” on his poster ban plea.

A Sinn Fein spokesperson said: “Sinn Fein already has posters up in a number of areas in the constituency. A voluntary ban on posters is something which could be considered but it would have to have Agreement from all parties.”

A DUP spokesperson said their candidates will be putting up their posters there, but that is solely a matter for them to discuss.

Meantime, more candidates vying for the five seats in East Derry have been confirmed.

The DUP will see the return of outgoing MLAs George Robinson, Maurice Bradley and Adrian McQuillan fighting to retain their seats.

Sinn Fein’s candidates are outgoing MLA Caoimhe Archibald and former MLA Cathal O’hOisin.

The SDLP have chosen veteran politician John Dallat while Independent Claire Sugden will also be running in a bid to retain her seat.

Deputy Returning Officer Patricia Murphy said in the East Derry constituency 2,600 people had been taken off the register. Ms Murphy said letters were issued twice last year urging people to update their details or risk removal, adding some may have moved and not updated their details.