Finlay blasts Parades Commission over Ballymaconnelly

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Ballymoney councillor John Finlay has hit out at restrictions placed upon bands at this Friday’s Ballmaconnelly parade.

Cllr Finlay said: “The outrageous decision by the Parades Commission in relation to the annual Ballymaconnelly Sons of Conquerors Flute Band parade in Rasharkin this Friday evening is yet another reminder that this Commission has lost all credibility and respect and has to go.

“Almost every single time, it seems, the Commission panders to the threat of violence and punishes those who merely seek to exercise their civil and religious liberties in a peaceful and law-abiding manner.

“This popular annual band parade draws large crowds yet has to be restricted. Why? Because the Commission is only interested in responding to bully-boys who threaten to resort to violence if they do not get their way. “Principles and fairness are set aside in favour of cowardice and appeasement. The feelings of anger are running high within the Protestant community in Rasharkin,” he concluded.