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Last Updated: Friday, 14 January, 2005, 11:55 GMT
President defiant on independence
Sir Norman Browse
Sir Norman Browse: Call to members to stay non-aligned
President of Alderney States Sir Norman Browse has explained his controversial opening address at the first meeting of the year.

Sir Norman caused a stir by telling members not too become too closely associated with pressure groups and single issue causes.

He says this does not mean they cannot have special interests.

His comments follow the election of a number of States members who back pressure group Vision Alderney (VA).

Members are elected to cover all causes of the island and to be representative as best they can of all the people
Sir Norman Browse
Alderney's government is made up of 10 politicians overseen by its president and, like its Channel Island neighbours Guernsey and Jersey, it has no political parties.

Political parties are not banned on Alderney, but no one has tried to upset the tradition of non-aligned politicians.

Sir Norman said: "I think every politician has a number of causes that they are concerned with.

"What I am concerned about is that they do not concern themselves with that cause and little else and so develop into a member that appears to have no other interests.

"Members are elected to cover all causes of the island and to be representative as best they can of all the people."

Alderney States
Alderney States: Non party political

In December last year VA denied suggestions it had become a political party, after VA member Barbara Benfield topped the poll.

But Sir Norman said that States members should avoid "active participation" in pressure groups.

He said: "If you become chairman of that group then you run into conflict with your role as a States member."

He denied he was targeting Vision Alderney members.

"When a pressure group starts formulating policies - and it (VA) has not done that yet - it does come into conflict with the policies the States are developing.

"People were concerned that, from a fact-finding group it was becoming a policy determining group and that really is a political party."

Jersey's first political party, the Jersey Democratic Alliance is expected to hold its first meeting in April.

The man behind the party, Senator Ted Vibert says the party will pursue what he calls middle road politics.




SEE ALSO:
Call for 'impartial' politicians
13 Jan 05 |  Guernsey
Barrister takes reins in Alderney
04 Jan 05 |  Guernsey
Island poll winner 'independent'
13 Dec 04 |  Guernsey
Rebel senator buoyed by support
16 Nov 04 |  Jersey


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