Page last updated at 11:22 GMT, Thursday, 5 March 2009

Minister stands by 'negativity'

Arlene Foster
Arlene Foster said she would not withdraw her remarks

The Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster has refused to withdraw her recent comment that there is a "rising level of negativity" in Londonderry.

Mrs Foster said last month that this could have jeopardised plans for a 30m euro telecommunications hub.

Derry businessman Philip O'Doherty, who campaigned to bring Project Kelvin to the city, called on her to retract her comment.

But the DUP MLA said on Thursday that it was "time to move on".

"This project is a great opportunity, we must maximise this investment and I encourage everyone now to work together and take advantage of the opportunities that this project will bring."

Mr O'Doherty said the comments made by the minister were unacceptable.

"We should all be calling for the minister to apologise for the ridiculous and outrageous comments she made," he said.

The site for the Project Kelvin "telehouse" was moved from Derry to Coleraine, but the location was reversed in February after a campaign by politicians and businessmen.

Mrs Foster's committee, the The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment is to meet in Derry on Thursday.

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