Northern Ireland news

Tory Lagan Valley candidate Gary Hynds quits over protocol and will run as independent

Former NI Conservatives Lagan Valley candidate Gary Hynds

THE NI Conservative's assembly candidate in Lagan Valley has quit the party in protest at the protocol and plans to stand as an independent.

Gary Hynds said the regional Tories were "out of step with their own stated policy which is to abandon the hated protocol".

He said he had been criticised for being "outspoken" on the post-Brexit trade arrangements.

“Northern Ireland Conservatives are schizophrenic on what is a fundamental point – some seem to think you can half oppose and half support it, depending on which constituency you find yourself in," Mr Hynds said.

"They are asking the electorate to buy into a dangerous mixed message."

Announcing that he will run in May 5's poll as an independent, Mr Hynds described his erstwhile party as a "beaten docket".

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