Hain to challenge ruling on parade members

Tuesday 23 May 2006 19.10
Peter Hain - Appointments had followed rules
Peter Hain - Appointments had followed rules

The Northern Secretary, Peter Hain, is to challenge a Belfast High Court ruling that his appointment of two members of the Orange Order to the Parades Commission was unlawful.

A resident of the nationalist Garvaghy Road in Portadown, at the centre of the long-standing Drumcree Orange parade dispute, won an order overturning the appointments.

Portadown Orangemen David Burrows and Don MacKay were appointed when the Commission was reconstituted last November.

A judge said the appointments procedure had not been balanced because the three loyal orders were encouraged to apply for posts but the nationalist community and residents' groups were not.

By the time the judgement was made on Friday, Mr MacKay had resigned amid controversy over his application form and Mr Burrows' appointment was overturned.

Mr Hain has maintained that the appointments procedure was impartial, subjective and followed all the rules.