‘Remove criminal union flag colours’

editorial image

Angry Limavady residents affronted by the colours of the British union flag having been painted on street infrastructure throughout the town will remove the criminal decorations if the statutory authorities won’t.

That’s according to Sinn Féin councillor Brenda Chivers, who has once again asked TransportNI to address a form of vandalism which has blighted Limavady on a regular basis.

The Department of Infrastructure (DI), however, has indicated that it will only act to remove illegal paintings from its property if there is broad public support.

It has also referred to the need to secure the safety of the staff who would be required to carry out the removals.

But Colr. Chivers said this isn’t good enough and warned people are prepared to remove the paintings themselves if the authorities won’t act.

“In July I made TransportNI aware that various road structures near Limavady had been painted red, white and blue. TransportNI responded that they would not repaint the structures due to staff safety fears and the cost,” she said.

“This act of vandalism is against the law. The people of Limavady take great pride in their town, I demand that TransportNI do the same. I have once again requested TransportNI take steps to address this vandalism. Local people have in fact said they are willing to rectify this themselves if TransportNI will not take responsibility. I would appeal to anyone with information about those responsible for this act of vandalism to report it to the PSNI,” she added.

The defacement of departmental property is an offence under Article 87(1) of the Roads (NI) Order 1993.

But DI has warned: “Experience has indicated that it is counter-productive to remove such graffiti unless there is local support for the removal.”