Speaking in advance of tonight’s protest supporting the call for a forensic audit of Causeway Coast and Glens Council, Sinn Féin Council Group Leader, Cara McShane, said:
“Sinn Féin fully support the call for a forensic audit of Causeway Coast and Glens Council.
“We supported this forensic audit when it was first suggested by the external representative on the Council’s Audit committee some months ago and we have consistent supported this since.
“It is frustrating that 6 unionist Councillors have now tried to thwart this process by using a mechanism to call-in the decision and to prolong the implementation of a forensic audit being carried out. It is, therefore, not surprising to see that the public want to visibly vent their anger through the protest tonight at the Council’s monthly meeting.
“The Unionist dominated Council have froze the rates income for several years. The two unionist parties were given reassurances at the most senior level within the organisation, that despite inflation and the introduction of the Living Wage – the Council could sustain a lower income base. What transpired was inevitable – a complete decimation of Council’s savings and a rates hike this year.
“There are many questions that have been left unanswered. The Council and wider public have a right to get those reassurances. This can only be achieved through a forensic audit.
“In the interests of transparency, all elected representatives as custodians of the public purse, should be supporting any proposal which helps add accountability and reinstate trust within the organisation.
“We will be actively working within Causeway Coast and Glens Council to deliver sensible resolutions that are people-led and that protect ratepayers and our services.”