Northern Ireland news

Second Sinn Féin minister used ministerial car when attending Bobby Storey's funeral

Communities Minister Carál Ní Chuilín used her ministerial car to attend Bobby Storey's funeral. Picture by Mal McCann

A SECOND Sinn Féin minister used their official car and driver when attending Bobby Storey's funeral in June, it has emerged.

It was reported last week that Finance Minister Conor Murphy was transported to the leading IRA man's funeral using his ministerial car.

Senior Sinn Féin members were criticised for attending the funeral, where there were breaches of the guidelines designed to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

It has emerged that Communities Minister Carál Ní Chuilín also used her ministerial car to attend the June 30 funeral in west Belfast.

Her use of the official car and driver was made public in a response to a written assembly question tabled by TUV leader Jim Allister.

The minister confirmed her use of the ministerial car for the funeral, adding: "I was later collected and taken to Stormont for assembly business, including the final stage of the Housing (Amendment) Bill."

Mr Allister has yet to receive a response to assembly questions asking Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill and Junior Minister Declan Kearney if they also used ministerial cars to attend the funeral.

The North Antrim MLA described the use of publicly-funded transport, coupled with the breaches of coronavirus guidelines, as "double standards".

"There may be a desire within the political class to move on and forget about the scandal of the Storey funeral but this latest revelation deserves attention," Mr Allister said.

"There will be many who will note the contrast between the appeal of the Hume family not to go to John Hume’s funeral because of the public health risks and the disregard which Sinn Féin displayed of the general public when it came to the Storey funeral."

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