News Letter

**God knows what she'd support if she didn't stand accused of having a nationalist bias. . .and I wish Dempster would study parallelism.

I'm Not Biased Insists O'Loan

By Stephen Dempster
Thursday 22nd July 2004

Police Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan last night admitted she has a major problem in her job because she does not have the trust of rank and file PSNI officers.

Denying accusations that she had a nationalist bias,

she supported officers' right to fire plastic baton rounds

and carry CS spray,

and declaring the need for Special Branch.

Mrs O'Loan was speaking at a House of Commons meeting of the Northern Ireland Select Affairs Committee which is investigating her office.

During the evidence session, she was questioned by DUP MP Gregory Campbell who suggested she cannot win over officers or unionists because she is married to an SDLP councillor, Declan O'Loan.

The Ombudsman replied: "I am not a tool of any political party."

Meanwhile, there was speculation last night that the Prime Minister will shuffle his Cabinet today or tomorrow, with moves possibly afoot at the Northern Ireland Office. Mr Blair is expected to make ministerial changes ahead of the summer break.

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