Ulster Unionist MLA for Lagan Valley, Basil McCrea, spoke on behalf of the Ulster Unionist Party today in rejecting an SDLP motion on the detention of Marion Price in Maghaberry.
The UUP Justice Spokesperson commented:
‘The SDLP today brought a motion to the Assembly which expressed concern about the continuing detention of Marian Price whilst also noting her on-going medical and social needs. The facts are clear; Marian Price was one of the IRA’s Old Bailey bombers, which injured around 180 people, and was sentenced to life imprisonment for her part in that terrorist act. She was subsequently released on licence in 1980 due to her poor health.’
‘Since her release Ms Price has been arrested in connection with the murders of Sappers Mark Quinsey and Patrick Azimkar in 2009 and was subsequently charged in 2010 with encouraging support for a proscribed organisation. The Secretary of State has taken the decision to revoke her licence, exercising his right under the Life Sentences (Northern Ireland) Order 2001, and Ms Price is now detained in Glen House at Maghaberry in a cell which has been specifically adapted at a cost of £2257 to cater for her.’
‘Ultimately, this matter is one which concerns the Judiciary and not something which political parties should be seeking to influence given that this brings into question the separation of the powers of the judiciary and legislature. Having said that, the Ulster Unionist Party is clear that we believe the Secretary of State has acted within his powers in revoking the licence of Marion Price taking into account the general safety of the people of Northern Ireland.”