A new political party, the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland is launched in Belfast.
Co-founded by Oliver Napier and Robert Cooper, the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland is launched at a press conference in Belfast. The new political party is formed mainly by members of the New Ulster Movement (NUM).
Chairman of the NUM political committee Robert Cooper speaks at a meeting in Belfast to announce the formation of the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland. Also present are chairman of the North Derry parliamentary association John Hunter, NUM joint treasurer Oliver Napier and David Corkey who contested the South Antrim by-election as an independent.
Oliver Napier believes,
The new party is necessary because the Unionist Party is utterly discredited in the eyes of the people of Northern Ireland.
The Alliance Party of Northern Ireland represents moderate and non-sectarian unionism. In his opinion, the Unionist Party has always been a sectarian party with links with the Orange Order. He does not believe the opposition parties are competent enough to form an alternative government.
The new party will not split the moderates within the Unionist Party as Oliver Napier sees,
The Unionist Party is going hard right at the moment and the moderates inside the Unionist Party in due course will have to leave it.
Olivier Napier backs the government's reform programme and will not be advocating anything that could jeopardise the implementation of this programme.
He is a supporter of the union between Great Britain and Northern Ireland,
We support unequivocally the constitutional position of Northern Ireland; those who also support it are welcome to join our party.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 20 April 1970.