The SDLP’s Michael Savage standing in the Westminster election pledges he will take his seat in Westminster if elected.
Speaking after he was chosen as the party’s candidate, Newry SDLP Councillor Michael Savage said that “local people deserve more than an empty seat while Brexit threatens jobs, businesses and communities.”
Mr Savage added: “I vow to provide a level of representation for the constituency that was pioneered by the late Eddie McGrady.
“Brexit is a national emergency. It threatens people, jobs and businesses across this island. At a time of immense crisis, it’s just not good enough that our MP has decided to abstain on this island’s future. Boris Johnson, the DUP and others are delighted that it’s one less vote against their plans to privatise our health service and sell large chunks off to American profiteers.
“They are delighted that there is no-one representing people here in South Down who oppose welfare cuts and austerity that have left the most vulnerable destitute.
“This is a moment for leadership. My promise to people in South Down is that I will never abstain on our future. I will never abstain on the need for investment in people and communities here. I will never abstain on protecting the Good Friday Agreement or the people I represent.
“With no Executive and no Assembly for 1000 days, our future is being decided in London and we’re having no say in it. No more! This is a defining election. It is a moment of choice and a moment for change. I am not content to continue with the direction of travel. I will not sit idly by as our interests are undermined. Brexit can be stopped at Westminster. SDLP MPs will vote to stop Brexit.
“I will be an MP for all the people of South Down and work hard for everyone in the same way that the late Eddie McGrady and Margaret Ritchie did before me.
“That level of representation has been missing in South Down since 2017 and I’m determined to bring that back to the people.
“It’s time for real representation for the people of South Down. This is a two horse race between two pro-remain candidates and the people of South Down have a simple choice.
“Do you want an MP who will turn up for you, fight for you and your family and make your voice heard in Westminster, or one who won’t.”