The TUV have rejected claims by DUP MLA Ian McCrea that smaller Unionist parties contesting the forthcoming election in Mid Ulster are splitting the unionist vote and handing council seats to Sinn/Fein.
Cookstown District Electoral Area candidate Walter Millar and Magherafelt District Electoral Area Candidate Mr Gareth Ferguson responded by saying that rather than vote splitting as the DUP claims smaller Unionist parties standing in these elections increases and maximises the unionist vote.
The TUV candidates said that as long as the unionist voters transfer their votes then “the idea that seats will be lost and given to Sinn/Fein is untrue and is a DUP scaremongering tactic.”
“Evidence for this vote splitting as detailed by Ian McCrea when he refers to the Magherafelt Town area council election in 2011 clearly shows that it was 432 unionist voters who stayed at home from the previous council election in 2005 that allowed Sinn/Fein to win the last council seat from the DUP and no one else,” the statement continued.
“The facts are very clear and can be easily verified and understood as the combined Nationalist vote in Magherafelt town in 2011 was 4036 and as the quota was 976 votes, Nationalists had 132 votes over 4 quotas and it was evident that Sinn/Fein would get three seats and the SDLP one seat.
“The DUP would do well to recall that the right for Freedom of Civil and Religious Liberty was won in the Glorious Revolution in 1688 and our rights for democracy were hard fought and won in the two Great wars so it is only right that voters should be given freedom of choice to vote for whichever party they want and not just larger political parties.”