Ulster Unionist Harold McKee MLA has revealed that there are now more live super-injunctions than in anytime over the last 10 years. The information was released to the South Down MLA after he tabled an Assembly Question to the Minister of Justice.
Harold McKee said:
“These figures would suggest that there are still individuals in Northern Ireland who may be using archaic injunction orders to shield themselves from scrutiny or public comment. There are currently 6 in place.
“The expense of applying for and securing these legal protections can be enormous and as such it is often a route only open to a privileged few. It’s therefore no surprise that many people will find their continuing use, along with the fact there are now more live than in anytime over the last 10 years, deeply disturbing.
“It once again starkly demonstrates the consequences of the Executive’s decision not to adopt similar defamation laws in Northern Ireland that exist across the rest of the UK. Earlier this year a major report by Dr Andrew Scott recommended that many of the measures equivalent to the UK’s Defamation Act should be introduced into law here. In the months since the Executive has again done nothing.
“These latest figures of super-injunctions will further compound the pressure on the DUP, as they have been the major barrier to modernising our local defamation laws, to explain why exactly they are so determined not to allow freedom of speech in Northern Ireland by desperately clinging to the laws of the past.”