Former MLA Maurice Devenney has confirmed that he has joined the UUP.
In a brief statement to the Londonderry Sentinel he said: “Following intense discussion within the broader Unionist family in the Londonderry District, I have decided after prayerful consideration, to join the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP).
“I appreciate the support from the Unionist family here, including friends, family and former members of the DUP, as well as from other Unionists.
“A more detailed statement will follow once I have consulted further with my legal team.”
His announcement means the UUP now has three members sitting on Derry City and Strabane District Council representing the interest of constituents.
Party Leader, Mike Nesbitt said he was particularly pleased to welcome Maurice into the Ulster Unionist Party, given his standing in the community, his lengthy record of service for the people, and his obvious appetite for more.
“Maurice joins an ever-lengthening list of elected representatives who are opting to change their party political allegiance to Ulster Unionism,” he said.
“He joins ex-DUP Councillors Jenny and John Palmer from Lisburn, William Cudworth formerly of the TUV in Bangor, Joe Jordan, a previous UKIP candidate in Strangford and Heather Fee from Mallusk who has joined us from NI21.
“I look forward to working with Maurice, who will bring a new dynamic and energy to our operation in the Foyle constituency and welcome him to the team, as do Mary Hamilton and Derek Hussey, our representatives on Derry and Strabane Council, and our key association members.”
Mr Devenney was formally welcomed to the Party at an extraordinary meeting of the Foyle UUP Association last night, Thursday, by the Constituency President Jack Allen and Chairman William Jamieson, after a large turnout of members unanimously agreed to accept Mr Devenney into the Party.
Mr Allen commended Mr Devenney for his service to the PUL community in the northwest and said he was welcome to the UUP and he looked forward to Mr Devenney continuing the good work of the Party into the future.
Welcoming Mr Devenney to the meeting and the Party, Mr Jamieson said Mr Devenney brought with him a wealth of experience in local politics.
Among the first to congratulate Mr Devenney and welcome him to the Party today, Friday, was Alderman Mary Hamilton, who said: “I have known Maurice for many years and have worked in harmony with him in the council throughout our careers as Aldermen.
“He is one of the most fair, honest people I have ever worked alongside in my capacity as an Alderman, despite the fact that up to now we have been in different Parties. Maurice’s track record and his ethics when dealing with people are unimpeachable and I look forward to working with him within the UUP in the future. He is very welcome to the UUP.”