THE self-appointed Loyalist ‘watchdog’ calling itself Dromore Unionist Voice has insisted it is a peaceful group from whom Nationalists, Roman Catholics and the Unionist politicians it has pledged to ‘monitor’ have nothing to fear.
In its latest statement the still anonymous group repeated its aim of monitoring Unionist councillors and MLAs in respect of their delivery on election pledges to further the Unionist cause.
“We are not a terrorist group and don’t target any councillors, MLAs, police, their homes or families,” the statement reads. “Also, Roman Catholics and Nationalists have nothing to be worried about. Our concerns about Dromore and surrounding towns, villages and hamlets falling into economic decline affect them and their families also.”
The group also called again for what it called the two main Unionist parties to come together to safeguard Northern Ireland’s long-term place within the United Kingdom.
“That’s why,” it said, “we call for one, new, single party to have more seats in government and not let Sinn Fein and the SDLP have more power.”
Failing that, the group suggests no more than two Unionist parties.
“With all the violence from the last two months over the Union Flag being removed from Belfast City Hall,” it said, “ there may have to be a new, second, smaller Unionist/Loyalist party formed for working class Unionists/Loyalists to have a voice over the Union Flag issue and economic decline in their areas . . . The TUV and PUP could join together to have one new Unionist/ Loyalist party.”
The group goes on to claim more Loyalists were arrested as a result of recent flag protests than is typically the case at Republican protests and that Loyalist band parades are more heavily policed than their Republican counterparts.
The Dromore Unionist Voice statement continues, “The only way the Unionist/Loyalist people of Dromore and Northern Ireland can make change is to get out and vote in force at the next elections; use the ballot box.”
Stressing its support for the armed forces, the group calls for the year-long flying of the Union Flag at Belfast City Hall and Stormont in memory of service personnel who had given their lives in service of their country.
The statement concludes, “We send leaflets to local newspaper editors, shops, DUP and Ulster Unionist offices; (some are) left in phone boxes and sent also to the Loyal Orders in Dromore, by legal means, to express our concerns on the future of the Unionist cause and for Dromore and Northern Ireland to remain in the United Kingdom.”