13 Aug 2022

'It's a slap in the face to us' - Father of Derry man killed by drunk driver calls on new Deputy Mayor to step down and give up his role on policing body

The father of a Derry man killed by a drunk driver has called on the new Deputy Mayor of Derry and Strabane to step down from his position and to also give up his place as the chair of a local policing body. The UUP's Derek Hussey was appointed Deputy Mayor of the local council district earlier this month. Last week, Alderman Hussey was also appointed as the chairperson of the Derry and Strabane Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP). However, local Sinn Fein councillors said they could not support the move, given Alderman Hussey has three previous convictions for drinking driving, and that road safety is a focus of the PCSP. Now, a local father whose son was killed by a drunk driver on Halloween night has called for Alderman Hussey to give up both his role as the Deputy Mayor and the chair of the policing partnership. Martin Gallagher, whose son Martin (pictured above)was killed on Halloween night in 2009, said that Alderman Hussey's appointment was a 'slap in the face' to families who had lost loved ones to drink drivers. "It's a disgrace and the council need to think about what kind of message this is sending out," he said. However, Alderman Hussey has said that he is 'content' with his position, but also offered to meet with Mr Gallagher and other families who had suffered a loss due to drink drivers. "I have every sympathy with these families, and I was very fortunate that there were no fatalities or injuries as a result of the incidents I was involved in," he said. "But I have been dealt with by the courts, and internally by my own party, and having discussed this matter with the party leaders I am content with the position I have taken."

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