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Dallat: DRD Minister to appear before Committee

The Minister for Regional Development Danny Kennedy is to appear before the scrutiny committee responsible for DRD matters tomorrow morning (Wednesday) to answer questions relating to the collapse of the tender process for phase two of the upgrade of the Belfast-Derry railway. Senior personnel in Translink will also appear separately before the Regional Development Committee. East Derry SDLP Assembly Member John Dallat who is a member of the DRD Committee has welcomed the meetings and has promised they will be very frank. He said: “The collapse of the procurement process which should have enabled the next phase of the upgrade of this important railway was a severe setback for those of us who have worked for many years, initially to prevent the closure of the line and in more recent times to ensure that the standards are brought up to a first-class intercity service. “I sincerely hope the minister and the senior officials from Translink are able to reassure members of the DRD committee that this project will be back on track with the minimum of delay. “The people of the North West are well used to disappointments in issues relating to road and rail transport but that doesn’t mean they are any more willing to accept them. On the contrary there is a new determination to get across the message to the Department and Translink that nothing less than equality is acceptable. “The news delivered by Mr Kennedy was a slap in the face for the second time relating to the same issue and it cannot happen again. “Today’s meeting must clear up a number of issues which will make this meeting frank and robust.
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