Peter Robinson chiede l’apertura di un’indagine per valutare se abbia violato leggi in riferimento agli illeciti della moglie
La BBC ha trasmesso Spotlight, un programma incentrato sulla vicenda che sta tenendo banco l’attenzione dell’opinione pubblica in Irlanda del Nord e non solo. Iris Robinson, ha ammesso di non aver dichiarato il suo interesse finanziario in un progetto commerciale del ‘baby’ amante Kirk Mc Cambley, per una somma pari a 50.000 sterline.
Peter Robinson è accusato di non aver immediatamente riferito dell’affare agli organi competenti, violando regolamenti parlamentari e leggi, pur essendo essere obbligato dal codice ministeriale ad agire nel pubblico interesse in ogni momento.
Nell’intervista rilasciata da Robinson, ha affermato di aver dato ordine agli ufficiali dell’Office of the First and Deputy First Minister, di avviare un’indagine sulla sua condotta.
“Io non credo di avere fatto qualcosa di sbagliato. Ho agito correttamente in ogni momento”, ha dichiarato il primo ministro che ha richiesto di affidare ad un consulente senior la visione del programma, a cui potranno seguire domande o pareri su come avrebbe dovuto agire.
“Non credo di aver fatto niente di male. Ho agito correttamente in ogni momento. Ho sottoposto me stesso ad un’indagine. Sono pronto a rendere pubblico l’esito di tale indagine”.
Robinson ha riferito che deciderà dopo l’inchiesta come agire, lasciando trasparire la fondatezza dell’ipotesi che pare sempre più fondata delle sue dimissioni dalla testa di Stormont.
Martin McGuinness, vice primo ministro del Sinn Fein, ha affermato di essere rimasto scioccato dalla visione del programma trasmesso dalla BBC e richiede un incontro urgente con il suo ‘superiore’ per discutere dell’intrigo finanziario di cui s’è fatto complice.
Nel frattempo il leader dell’Ulster Unionist Party, Sir Reg Empey, sostiene che Robinson dovrebbe riconsiderare in fretta la propria posizione come primo ministro.
Tutto lascia presagire ci si stia muovendo progressivamente verso l’era post-Robinson.
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Robinson defiant despite pressure (BBC News Northern Ireland)
Northern Ireland’s First Minister Peter Robinson has said he wants an inquiry to assess whether he has breached any rules over his wife’s affairs.
A BBC programme asked why the DUP leader did not tell the authorities his wife had not registered £50,000 she obtained from two property developers.
Mr Robinson said he had asked officials to appoint a lawyer to investigate whether he done anything wrong. He said he would wait for it to be completed before deciding what to do.
BBC Northern Ireland’s Spotlight programme said Iris Robinson broke the law by not declaring her financial interest in the business deal.
She obtained the money from two property developers, which was paid to her 19-year-old lover to help him launch a cafe. She later asked him for £5,000 for herself.
The programme said Mr Robinson knew about her financial dealings but did not tell the proper authorities despite being being obliged by the ministerial code to act in the public interest at all times.
In an interview on Friday, Mr Robinson said he had asked officials at the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister to set up an investigation into his conduct.
“ I don’t believe I have done anything wrong. I have acted properly at all times. ”
He said: “Because I feel it is essential in the office of the First and Deputy First Minister that there should be no question of impropriety I have asked officials to engage a senior counsel who will be asked to look at the programme, to ask me any questions he or she wishes to ask, and to give an opinion as to what I should have disclosed or whether I have breached an obligation.”
Mr Robinson also stressed that he believed he would be exonerated by an investigation.
“I don’t believe that I have done anything wrong. I have acted properly at all times. I have subjected myself to investigation. I am prepared publicly to allow the outcome of that investigation to be known,” he said.
“I am prepared to act in accordance with the outcome of that investigation and I believe that the public, who are fair in these matters, will be prepared to have me judged by a thorough investigation and legal opinion being given to us, rather than the smear and innuendo of the press.”
Deputy First Minister, Sinn Fein’s Martin McGuinness, has said he is seeking an urgent meeting with Mr Robinson.
Mr McGuinness said he was “shocked” by what he watched on the Spotlight programme and wants to discuss specifically the financial issues raised and the implications it has for the Office of First and Deputy First Minister.
Meanwhile the leader of Ulster Unionist Party, Sir Reg Empey, has called on Mr Robinson to consider his position.
He said: “Studying transcripts throughout the day, we have compared and contrasted the comments of the Spotlight programme with previous statements made by both Peter and Iris Robinson.
“We have also had a preliminary examination of the rules governing disclosure and it seems clear to us that we are moving steadily towards a post-Robinson era.”
“The prospect of a plethora of inquiries going on for months, distracting the First Minister and leaving Stormont in a powerless state cannot be contemplated. The Ulster Unionist Party therefore believes that Peter Robinson should give very serious consideration to his own position as First Minister.”