Ulster Unionist leader Robin Swann has hit out at the DUP, Sinn Féin and the Irish government during the party’s Fermanagh and South Tyrone AGM on Monday night.

Speaking at the meeting in Fivemiletown Mr. Swann said his party was a “party of devolution” however he would find it impossible to bring the party back into the Executive based on the past failings of the last Executive.

“The Ulster Unionist is a Party of devolution, but it is obvious to everyone that nothing has changed in relation to the Northern Ireland Assembly and Executive in the last year, so at this time we desperately need accountable decision making, therefore the only option at this time is Direct Rule.

“I wish it was the NI Executive and Assembly who were making the decisions here, but it’s not, and we desperately need pro-active accountable and responsible administration.

“There must be a credible rebalancing of the openness and transparency of any new Executive and Assembly they should not be re-established simply as they operated before.

“There is no point in returning to the past failures, where Sinn Féin and the DUP were in a partnership, where they were two sides of the same coin, nobody can confidently say that one of them didn’t know in broad terms and often in detail what the other was doing,” he said.

Speaking about Brexit, Mr. Swann told the audience that the UUP accepted the outcome of the June 2016 referendum and implored with the UK government not to be held to ransom by the EU, hitting out at the actions of the Irish government.

“We deplore the non-compromising stance taken by the EU and the particularly aggressive position of the Republic of Ireland government,” he said.

“It appears that the Irish Deputy Leader of the Fine Gael government Simon Coveney is acting as the official spokesperson for all 27 EU member states when directly addressing the Government.

“Sadly, it appears that it is the tail wagging the dog, with the Irish making the policy on the UK Brexit for the remainder of the EU.

“There must be wider concern within the Republic of Ireland that they will become very isolated within the EU when the UK leave.

“I would have thought it would be important for them to be trying to work with the UK at present as opposed to being the heavy handed aggressor.”

Mr. Swann (pictured left) also said that any plan to leave the EU should ensure that Northern Ireland is treated the exact same was as the rest of the UK.

Away from the talk of Brexit and lack of devolved government, the UUP leader paid tribute to the Ulster Unionist Councillors in the Fermanagh and Omagh District Council for the work they do for their constituents.

“As we move towards the Local Government elections in May, can I thank and congratulate, the Ulster Unionist Party group on the Fermanagh and Omagh Council, they have delivered for the electorate and residents with a level of service that can be expected from Ulster Unionist Party representatives.

“Where we have always been driven to serve others, while others seem driven only to serve themselves,” he said.