Upper Bann Sinn Féin MLA John O’Dowd has accused the DUP of denying people access to medicines and operations.
Mr O’Dowd was putting a question to the Finance Minister in the Assembly in regards his statement that he could no longer proceed with a three budget in the wake of the resignation of DUP First Minister Paul Givan.
Mr O’Dowd said :
‘Minister, I have been around this place for 20 years, and the Budget proposed by you, which included a 10% increase in health spending, was the biggest socio-economic investment in our society since the Good Friday Agreement. That is the scale of the change that your Budget could have made.
‘Does the Minister agree that it is not the EU or the protocol that is denying people access to medicines and operations or preventing the recruitment of more nurses and doctors but the DUP? The failure of the party opposite to allow you to pass the Budget will have huge consequences for every citizen in this part of the island.
In his response Minister Murphy replied :
“The issues with the protocol will not be resolved in the Executive. The situation will not be helped by damaging people as a consequence of our not having a Budget to support public services. The issues will be resolved between the British Government and the EU. That is where we want to see them resolved.”