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Foster has irreparably damaged trust in any future energy schemes – Swann

Ulster Unionist Party Leader Robin Swann MLA has said that the manner in which RHI recipients were misled about guarantees of future payments has irreparably destroyed any trust that there may have been for future renewable energy schemes.

Robin Swann said:

“The RHI debacle is the biggest financial scandal in Northern Ireland’s history.

“Taxpayers were badly let down, at one stage looking at a bill of well in excess of £400million, and now many of the genuine applicants to the scheme have been left thousands of pounds out of pocket.

“The reality is many only applied after they were actively encouraged to do so by businesses and Government Departments. Arlene Foster’s own decision to write to banks encouraging them to support applicants to the scheme on the basis of supposed guarantees, has now irreparably broken any trust that individuals will ever have in similar assurances in the future.

“When she told the RHI Inquiry that she was ‘accountable but not responsible’, it only served to further rub salt in the wounds for the many people who applied to the scheme in good faith.

“Whilst Arlene Foster has said the DUP are sorry for how they handled the scheme, to date she has shown no personal remorse for her central role in its design, implementation and failings. It's long past time for her to apologise to the public and to the current scheme recipients especially.”

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