Northern Ireland

RHI: Finance Minister wants to deliver 'no-hiding-place' inquiry

Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir
Image caption Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir said he will meet the political parties on Monday to discuss plans for the inquiry

The finance minister has said he wants to deliver a "no-hiding-place inquiry" into the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Scheme.

On Thursday, Sinn Féin's Máirtín Ó Muilleoir asked officials to take steps to establish a public inquiry into the controversy surrounding the scheme.

He confirmed he will meet political parties on Monday to discuss plans for the inquiry.

"This inquiry will be impartial and objective," he said.

"It will be tasked with getting to the truth of this scandal. These meetings will provide an opportunity to discuss the terms of reference and hear the views of other parties."

He said he will make a statement to the assembly on the RHI inquiry on Tuesday.

Last week, DUP leader Arlene Foster welcomed, what she said was Sinn Féin's "change of heart" over the inquiry issue.

Q&A: What is the RHI scheme?

BBC News NI reports on the RHI scheme

On Thursday Mr Ó Muilleoir said: "It is clear that, with time short until the assembly dissolves, the only way to serve the public interest is for me as Finance Minister to move to institute a public inquiry immediately."

"No other type of investigation is now feasible given time pressures," he added.

"I have now instructed officials to take the necessary steps to establish a public enquiry under the Enquiries Act 2005 into the RHI scheme.

"I have received legal advice in regard to these matters."

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