Kelly set to contest Westminster election

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SDLP candidate for Westminister, Dolores Kelly, has landed a swipe at the DUP’s David Simpson, accusing him of jeopardising the interests of the people of NI.

Announcing her candidacy, the Upper Bann MLA said Mr Simpson ‘has jeopardised the interests of people, businesses and communities across NI by propping up Boris Johnson’s government’.

She said: “Brexit is a national emergency. It threatens people, jobs and businesses across NI and our MP has been complicit in it. Rather than using his influence to prevent a catastrophic Brexit, David Simpson has flirted with the far right of the Tory party, cosying up to Jacob Rees Mogg and Boris Johnson while the interests of people here are ignored. No more.

“In this moment of immense crisis, people in Upper Bann have the opportunity to break up the cosy consensus between the DUP and the Tory party. We have the opportunity to reject the no-deal Brexit that David Simpson has flirted with and to defend our communities.

“I reject Brexit. I believe it can only harm our business community, cost jobs and damage our fragile peace. We’ve had the opportunity for a soft Brexit, a Customs Union Brexit, a regulatory alignment Brexit. Now it’s time to stop Brexit. A small number of MPs will make a significant difference in the next House of Commons. As an MP, I won’t just say I’m against Brexit, I’ll vote against it too.

“The SDLP was the only party to register to campaign against Brexit during the 2016 referendum. We put our activists, our energy and our resource into fighting for the people we represent. While others put up posters after the fact, we were on the front line.

“Our future is being decided at Westminster and our MP is too busy pretending he’s part of some pound shop Game of Thrones in London to stand up for us. It’s time for a change.”