Statement by TUV Mid Ulster Assembly candidate Hannah Loughrin:
“Confirmation by Mid Ulster District Council that it was contractors employed by them who removed the Union flag and pole in Magherafelt last night speaks volumes about how the council views its minority community.
“Not just the fact but the manner of the removal has caused huge offence.
“Where was the respect when, at the dead of night, the pole on which the National Flag flew was cut down?
“Let’s not forget that the Union Flag flew in Magherafelt for some 65 years without difficulties.
“It is telling that the council can act to remove a flag within hours of it going up while on matters which impact on the day to day lives of ratepayers the council takes forever to act.
“The Council might try to dress this up in the language of equality and making Magherafelt a “shared space” but in reality it is indicative of a council which is determined to deny any space to the expression of Unionist heritage and culture.”