Councillor Russell Watton has hit out at the DUP for allowing Sinn Fein to be the new Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council this year.
In a social media status, Councillor Watton said ‘ I have waited until now and a cooling off period before making a response to last Tuesday’s events in the Council Chamber.
Let me first state clearly that I am not in the habit of attacking other Unionists, any Unionist. I have just fought a clean election where I stood on my own merits.
However, the decision by the D.U.P. to allow Sinn Fein the Mayor’s chair in 2019 is in my view wrong. I can understand why they opted for 2021 as it is the 100th anniversary of the formation of Northern Ireland.
Yet in doing so, they have handed Sinn Fein a major propaganda boost which they will fully utilize during the forthcoming Open. The eyes of the world will be on the whole area. I wonder what Peter Robinson and Arlene Foster would think of this.
It was their hard work that brought the Open to Portrush in the first place.
This year we also have the freedom of the Borough for the R.A.F. and the dedication of a memorial to fallen U.D.R. members. Surely these events deserved the presence of a Unionist Mayor.
I saw for myself the attitude of Sinn Fein when Bateson was installed. One officer told me that they were amazed that they had got this year.
Anything that makes them deliriously happy cannot be good for Unionism.
We now have an “In your face” Republican as a Mayor. He would, of course, be the same no matter what the year.
If the focus for Unionism is to be 2021 then the work to truly commemorate it must begin immediately. Perhaps the entire Unionist family could agree on that one.
For myself and those I represent I have only one thing to say to Sean Bateson. You are not my Mayor!’