TUV have announced that Darrin Foster will be the party’s Upper Bann candidate in next year’s Assembly election.
Announcing his candidature Mr Foster said:
“A native of Derrylee between Portadown and Dungannon I grew up in a traditional family and attended Killicomaine Junior High and Craigavon Senior High schools. After completing my education I started an apprenticeship in light vehicle body repair but shortly after finishing my apprenticeship an opportunity came up to purchase a fish and chip shop in Moygashel along with my father.
“In 2018 I married Lisa and we bought a house in the Birches just outside Portadown and a year later my brother and I purchased a fish and chip shop in Portadown.
“From a young age I have always been interested in politics and in 2019 I was selected to represent the TUV in the local government elections for Portadown DEA. I was attracted to the party by both its uncompromising stand for the Union and issues such as the defence of the unborn’s right to life.
“I am a proud working class loyalist and have a passion for our culture. I have been involved in flute bands from a young age and hope to be a strong voice to stand up for and defends our culture. I want to change the perception that politicians don’t care about grassroot Unionists.
“I believe the current unionist leadership has failed. They are so focused on protecting the Stormont gravy train that they have taken their eye off the ball and brought us to a point where we are closer than ever before to a united Ireland. Who would have thought that a DUP Minister would build the border posts which separate us from the rest of the UK?
“The Stormont institutions need root and branch reform. You cannot force five parties with completely opposing views into government together and expect it to be good for Northern Ireland. The Belfast Agreement was viewed by some Unionists as a compromise but it is clear now that it was the start of an appeasement process with the end goal being Irish unity. It is time to stop the concessions.
“I have a passion for business and I know the joys and trials of working in the hospitality sector. I want to bring the practical experience I have gained in running a small business into the chamber in Stormont.
“With TUV being the only party pledged to stop a Sinn Fein First Minister I am proud to represent those who will take a strong stand against Republicans in the upcoming election. It is an exciting time for the party as it continues to grow. People are waking up to the fact that the empty promises and constant u-turns of other parties are not good for our country. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson’s pledge to pull the plug on Stormont by the end of October if the Sea Border remained is a particularly glaring example of this. Such weakness is the reason why increasing numbers of Unionists are looking to TUV to provide leadership and why I believe I can be returned as an MLA for Upper Bann next year.”
Endorsing Darrin as the TUV candidate in Upper Bann Jim Allister said:
“The blend of youth and experience, along with an unwavering commitment to traditional unionism, which Darrin brings, means TUV can offer the voters in Upper Bann a real alternative to the disappointing representation experienced to date. Now is a time for change. If voters want to strengthen my hand in Stormont and join the fight back against aggressive republicanism, then, this is their opportunity. Vote Darrin Foster No. 1 with further preferences to other unionists.”