Alasdair McDonnell: SDLP keeping 'options open' on opposition

SDLP leader Alasdair McDonnell Alasdair McDonnell has previously said his party must hold others to account

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The SDLP leader Alasdair McDonnell has said his party is keeping its options open over going into opposition at Stormont.

But Dr McDonnell said the party was better remaining as a catalyst for change within the executive, rather than opposing it from the outside.

He previously said the party's main role was to hold other parties to account.

Several senior SDLP members have supported the idea of opposition.

"The present stagnation at Stormont desperately needs the SDLP to act as a catalyst, and if we were to pull out, I feel that maybe we could feel smug, but politics would not move on," he said.

In February, former SDLP minister Brid Rodgers said the party should leave the executive because it was not doing enough to bring people together.

Last year, the party's deputy leader also raised the idea.

Dolores Kelly said the SDLP was being tarnished by the failures and behaviour of the DUP and Sinn Fein.

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