Ramsey piles pressure on Farry over Magee ‘outburst’

SDLP MLA, Pat Ramsey.
SDLP MLA, Pat Ramsey.

SDLP Employment and Learning Spokesperson Pat Ramsey has initiated a number of actions challenging the DEL Minister Stephen Farry on his recent announcement that the expansion of Magee was being ‘shelved’.

The Foyle MLA said: “Following the unilateral outburst by the Minister on Magee’s future last week, which he has still failed to qualify, I have asked his Department for any and all documentation – including emails from officials – within his Department that led him to make such a dramatic and damaging statement about a key tenet of Derry’s economic future. I am confident that there is little evidence to support his conclusion about the future of Magee, and if indeed his budgetary position is in such a precarious state, he can bring forward this evidence to the Assembly and the DEL Committee. This is after all the Department that prioritised youth unemployment but recently surrendered £1 million on that project which it could not spend.

I have submitted a motion to the Assembly calling on the Minister to urgently reveal these crucial pieces of information and to bring his budgetary problems to the floor of the House to allow those elected to serve the people of the North West to scrutinise them.

Furthermore, a meeting of the Strategy Board has been arranged for this week to discuss a Citywide response to the position the Minister has adopted. I have asked Derry City Council to ensure that the senior DEL official representing the Department on an inter-departmental committee overseeing the implementation of the One Plan is present, so he can give his analysis of the current situation, provide answers to the people of this City and more importantly, communicate back to his Minister the fury and determination of this region about a decision that will have far reaching consequences for future generations.”