Stormont gets funding as London plans for a no-deal Brexit

Wed, 09/10/2019 - 12:00 -- Editor

SDLP Deputy Leader Nichola Mallon MLA has revealed today that Stormont Departments received £31.4m from the British Treasury to plan for a disruptive no-deal Brexit.

The North Belfast MLA said that clarity was needed on the detail of the allocations and spend.

She said:

“The Department of Finance has confirmed to me that they received £31.4m for no-deal preparations from the Treasury in August.  That is a significant sum of public money that could have been used to recruit 1,300 nurses or build more than 240 homes for homeless families across Northern Ireland. Instead, we’re spending it trying to mitigate the economic disaster that’s about to happen on our doorstep against the will of our people.

“The lion’s share of this allocation is going to the Department for Infrastructure for roads, vehicle parks, depot capacity and CCTV. We need to see the detail behind this spend because that reads to me like border infrastructure. We also need to know what the implications of Boris Johnson’s double border proposals are on these plans, given that the money was allocated two months beforehand.

“Civil Servants are being forced to make controversial and highly political decisions with no scrutiny or accountability. In the middle of a national emergency for this island, that is unacceptable. I have requested further details about this spend but we are clear – we should not be paying to bring on an economic disaster that will cost thousands of jobs."