Sinn Féin Leader Mary Lou McDonald TD welcomed progress on the return to power-sharing and expressed optimism today that the Assembly is expected to elect a new Executive before the 8 February deadline.
Mary Lou McDonald said:
“I am optimistic having heard Jeffrey Donaldson’s public declaration that we will see the northern institutions back up and running before the 8 February deadline with a fully functioning Assembly and Executive and north south bodies.
“I welcome the DUP’s commitment that it will respect the outcome of the Assembly elections and work with the other parties round the Executive table to now prioritise the huge challenges facing public services, workers and families.
“We have continued to have direct contact with both the British and Irish governments. Last autumn we urged the British government to bring an end to the endless two-way talks and called on the DUP to make the decision to return to the Executive. That has now happened, and is welcome news.
“The Executive will now be restored imminently with ministers back at the wheel running departments.
“Sinn Féin will now engage with the parties and Governments to ensure we now all press on without delay.
“It is vital now that there is political stability to address the scale of the crisis across our public services.
“Let’s now focus minds on the job at hand and to the solutions required to support workers and families who want and deserve functioning government.”