Election 2015 Northern Ireland

Election 2015: TUV calls for end to Stormont's mandatory coalition

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Media captionSpeaking at the party's manifesto launch in South Antrim, leader Jim Allister criticised the Stormont Assembly

The Traditional Unionist Voice has highlighted reform of Stormont and an early EU membership referendum as key policies in its manifesto.

The party launched the document at a hotel in South Antrim, one of seven constituencies in which there are TUV candidates.

Party leader Jim Allister said he wanted the UK to be "liberated from the clutches of the EU".

He also said the system of mandatory coalition at Stormont should end.

Mr Allister said the Stormont Executive should be a voluntary coalition.

He said the current system was denying voters "basic democratic rights" and that people should be able to change their government.

"This election and the business of government-making provide the perfect illustration of the strength of the TUV's case against mandatory coalition," he said.

Key priorities

TUV

Main pledges

  • Voters in NI should have same rights as other parts of UK - right to vote a party out of government and have an opposition
  • TUV demands early referendum on EU membership
  • TUV believes in reducing the waste which has "typified misrule" in Northern Ireland
  • It wants to see the abolition of the Parades Commission

"Just as the prospect of the people of the UK in a free election opting to change their government underscores the totalitarian denial of that right to the people of Northern Ireland when it comes to Stormont.

"If the Stormont system was applied at Westminster, then, despite the election, Cameron, Clegg and Miliband would all end up in Downing Street, with no opposition.

"How absurd. How unworkable, as we witness day, after day at Stormont. Yet TUV alone makes the case for democratic voluntary coalition plus opposition at Stormont, such as is likely to evolve at Westminster."

Mr Allister also said the DUP had "over-hyped" its potential to have influence in a hung parliament, and criticised the DUP for allowing MPs to be MLAs at the same time.

The manifesto, entitled The Real Alternative, said there should be no further devolution of powers to Stormont.

It also called for the development of Belfast International Airport to be prioritised because of increasing competition from Dublin Airport