Northern Ireland

RHI: DUP and SF accused of treating scandal like 'soap opera'

SDLP MLA Claire Hanna
Image caption SDLP MLA Claire Hanna has accused the DUP and Sinn Féin of playing the RHI scandal like a 'soap opera'

The SDLP has accused the DUP and Sinn Féin of playing the "cash for ash" controversy like a "soap opera".

South Belfast MLA Claire Hanna said no-one doubts the seriousness of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scandal but other "big challenges lie ahead".

"Whether the DUP and Sinn Féin play out this sham fight or they go to an election, we need a plan for Brexit... and we need them to get on with it".

The RHI scheme is approximately £490m over budget.

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams signalled, this weekend, that his party "would act" if Arlene Foster does not stand aside during an investigation into the botched green energy scheme.

However on Twitter, Ms Hanna claimed the DUP and Sinn Féin "love to star in dramas of their own making".

"For whatever reason, both parties have set their face against a public inquiry. They need to prove that the terms they are setting out are robust and help us get some answers," she added.

'Lingering suspicions'

Alliance Party leader Naomi Long has also called on the DUP and Sinn Féin to "get off their high horses" and to respect Stormont's institutions.

Image caption Alliance leader Naomi Long has called on the DUP and Sinn Féin to "get off their high horses".

Responding to Mr Adams speech on Saturday, she said: "There are strong words in it... but ambiguities remain as to Sinn Féin's real intentions and their wider approach to Government in Northern Ireland.

"People won't accept a deal between the DUP and Sinn Féin over this scandal. Openness and accountability are not something up for trading," she added.

"We need to see a proper public inquiry, anything short will leave lingering suspicions".

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