GAA matches still off the agenda for new MP

Tom Elliott at home

Tom Elliott at home

TOM Elliott has vowed to represent all people of Fermanagh and South Tyrone despite describing the constituency as “red, white and blue” during his victory speech.

Just hours after he arrived in London as an MP, the UUP man told the Fermanagh Herald that while “not every decision” he makes will make people happy he will honour his promise to represent local people “as best he can”.


“There will be some decisions that some people will be unhappy with but what I will want to do is try and represent Fermanagh and South Tyrone in general,” he said.

“Sometimes a vote you make or decision you take some people will be unhappy with but that’s the nature of it, but those same people will be content with other votes you make.”

However, the UUP man admitted that comments he made during his victory speech would not appeal to everyone after he described Fermanagh and South Tyrone as “red, white and blue”.

He said: “What I was meaning there that when you look at it (Fermanagh and South Tyrone) on the map once it came up on the screens on Thursday night it showed Fermanagh and South Tyrone and West Tyrone a dark green because they were represented by Sinn Fein and maybe that’s all that was being indicated there.

“People know me and local people know that I will go and do the best for the constituency no matter what that means.”

The UUP man stood over comments he made earlier that he will never attend a GAA match but did not rule out attending a GAA event like a charity fundraiser.

“The reality is people know this that I don’t accept they should be flying the Irish tricolour and playing the national anthem of the Republic of Ireland in Northern Ireland. People know that and I have always said that. Not everyone goes to the cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday but that doesn’t mean I don’t support organisations in what they do and you don’t have to be there to support it.


“I have never ruled going to a charity event in or out but there’s nothing at the moment that I am aware of but certainly in the principle of going to a GAA match I think that’s a different issue.”

Looking back over his “positive campaign”, Mr Elliott said he has no regrets.

The new MP refused to reveal any of his potential replacements at the Northern Ireland Assembly saying only that UUP leader Mike Nesbitt is seeking to find replacements for Mr Elliott and his party colleague Danny Kinahan who was elected as MP for South Antrim.

It is expected that the new MLAs will be put in place before the summer recess in early July.

Speaking to this newspaper on his first day at Westminster as an MP Tom described the experience as “daunting” but is looking forward to getting settled into London.

He added: “It’s a great opportunity to have our say on issues and it will take some time and I know people won’t expect miracles in a hurry.”


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