NI Assembly TV

Question Time: Executive Office Monday 8 March 2021

First Minister answers Members questions on 8 March 2021. Read the Official Report (Hansard) – https://lk.nia.fyi/3KgB

Each of the questions answered have been chaptered in the video to help you find them more easily.

Chapters / Questions

00:00 – Minority Ethnic Development Fund: Applications

1. Ms Flynn asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the level of applications for support from the minority ethnic development fund.

05:14 – Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland: Dedicated Mechanism

2. Mr Blair asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the initial work of the Equality Commission and Human Rights Commission regarding the dedicated mechanism.

11:10 – Urban Villages: Update

3. Ms Mullan asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the Urban Villages capital programme.

17:45 – Victims’ Payment Scheme: Update

5. Mrs D Kelly asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the funding for the Troubles-related-incident victims’ payment scheme.

6. Mr Stalford asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the current discussions with Her Majesty’s Government on the funding for the Troubles-related-incident victims’ payment scheme.

10. Mr Butler asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for an update on the Troubles permanent disablement payment scheme.

13. Mr K Buchanan asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister what further discussion they have had with the British Government to secure funding for the Troubles-related-incident victims’ payment scheme.

Topical Questions

29:19 – Mother-and-baby Homes: Expert Panel

T2. Ms S Bradley asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister, after wishing the First Minister a happy International Women’s Day and stating that she seeks to support those women who are victims and survivors of the notorious mother-and-baby homes, what assurances the First Minister can give that the inquiry into those homes will have sufficient powers to gather all the information required to seek absolute truth and justice, given that while she welcomes the establishment of the expert panel to work with victims to set the terms of reference for an independent investigation, she notes and is disappointed that it will not be a full public inquiry.

32:30 – Students: COVID-19 Restrictions

T3. Ms Bailey asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister whether the First Minister will outline the specific, detailed and unambiguous COVID-19 regulations that will apply to students while they are residing at a term-time address, bubbling and travelling in the lead up to St Patrick’s Day and the Easter period.

35:20 – Irish Language Week

T4. Mr Lunn asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister, given that, hopefully, the First Minister will be aware that this is Irish Language Week, whether she will join him in acknowledging and welcoming the annual event and will she congratulate the Irish language movement in its ongoing work to promote its cause.

40:33 – Paramilitarism: Executive’s Message

T6. Mr O’Dowd asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister, in order to touch on another aspect of the First Minister’s campaign against the protocol, and given that she will be aware that the Executive are actively engaged in attempts to eradicate paramilitarism through their paramilitary task force and associated campaigns, whether the First Minister thinks that the fact that she met with representatives of the gangs that are actively involved in criminality, drug-dealing and murder undermines the message from the Executive.

43:35 – Omagh Bomb: Justice Delay

T7. Mr T Buchanan asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister whether the First Minister will give her assessment of the appalling delay in the process of justice for the victims of the Omagh bomb, given that she will be aware that 19 August 1998 is a date that is, no doubt, etched on all our memories, when at 3.10 that afternoon, 29 innocent people and two unborn children lost their life following a car bomb in Omagh, something that has been described as the single worst atrocity of the murderous campaign in Northern Ireland, and, since then, the victims’ families have been seeking justice and although, in 2013, they issued judicial proceedings that concluded six years later in 2019, to date, a verdict has not been forthcoming from the Lord Chief Justice.