Executive will have final say on Dickson Plan - Robinson

DUP Assembly man Sydney Anderson has welcomed reassurances from First Minister Peter Robinson the future of the Dickson Plan.

In response to a question at Stormont from Mr Anderson, Peter Robinson said any decisions on the future of the Dickson Plan should be brought to the NI Executive for consideration.

Mr Anderson said, “I asked him what implications last December’s High Court decision (which ruled that the Agriculture Minister had breached the ministerial code by failing to refer a controversial matter to the Executive), might have for the Dickson plan for education in the Craigavon and Tandragee area.”

Mr Robinson told him the matter would “certainly be regarded as significant and controversial and, if finances are involved, it would also be cross-cutting”.

He added, “The recent decision is just a confirmation of what we already knew: such matters have to be brought to the Executive.”

Mr Robinson went on to say he had no reason to believe that Mr O’Dowd would fail to bring the matter to the Executive if it required a decision.

Mr Anderson said the response from the First Minister was a very significant one for supporters of the Dickson Plan. He said, “Supporters of the Dickson Plan should be encouraged by the First Minister’s robust and supportive line on this vital matter, and I and my party colleagues will continue to monitor developments closely.”