If no action - it's time for people to reject Protocol at polls

DUP Leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has said the Party is on an election footing, with East Antrim MLA Gordon Lyons appointed as the DUP Director of Elections.

By Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP

Lagan Valley

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Mr Donaldson said,

"On Thursday evening our Party Executive met. Our Director of Elections has been appointed. The Party has been preparing over recent weeks but we are now firmly on an election footing.

If London and Brussels are failing to act on the concerns of unionism, then it is time to let the people speak with a loud voice at the ballot box and reject the Protocol. We have had too many words about dealing with the Protocol but not enough action.

In any case, there will be an election in May but we cannot wait until then if the Protocol remains. It is costing Northern Ireland an estimated £850m per year. Time is short. It is damaging Northern Ireland politically and economically. Rather than my opponents attacking my ultimatum for an election, they should urge Brussels and London to deal with the flawed Protocol.

Reaching a solution to the problems we face should be the prize that everyone seeks. The root of our problems is the Irish Sea border and the imposition of checks on goods moving within our own country. Dealing with the root cause will create the stability to allow us meet the challenges in our schools and hospitals.

Resolution of the Protocol is not a question of technology or time. It is a question of political will. We are totally opposed to the Protocol as it presently exists. We will neither accept it nor will we work it. If solutions are not found and the choice is between remaining in office or implementing the Protocol in its present form, then the only option for any unionist Minister would be to cease to hold such office. It is time to let the people speak.

With an election possibly weeks away, we want every unionist to ensure their friends and family are registered to vote. The most effective step every unionist who rejects the Protocol could take now to help our campaign; is to ensure they are able to vote in a snap election.”

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