In a statement Kenny Donaldson, Spokesman with Innocent Victims United stated: “As a victim’s umbrella group we have no role in the politicking which led to the appointment of the new Justice Minister. Claire Sugden is the Minister and we will judge her on her performance, nothing else. We have already requested a meeting with the Minister so as to appraise her of the concerns that the IVU constituency of victims/survivors has with aspects of the Stormont House Dis’Agreement’ in terms of the legacy structures proposed but to also speak with her about some of the opportunities which also exist to advance the needs of victims/survivors”.
“Ms Sugden has a challenging brief ahead of her, it has been said already that she will be a puppet for OFMDFM, that is for her to prove other’s wrong and to charter her own distinct path and approach. We look forward to building a positive working relationship with her. Amongst other issues, we will wish to speak to her about the flawed legal aid system that we have operating in Northern Ireland and how it more times than not penalises innocent victims/survivors of terrorism, legacy inquests, matters concerning weekend release of prisoners serving prison sentences under the terms of the Belfast Agreement and the need for fresh legislation etc,” concluded Mr Donaldson.