Secretary of State Appoints New Members to The Parades Commission for Northern Ireland

The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Right Honourable Brandon Lewis CBE MP, has announced the appointment of a new Chair and Commissioners to the Parades Commission for Northern Ireland


The appointment of a new Chair, The Very Reverend Dr Graham Forbes, and four of the Commissioners, Derek Wilson, Marian Cree, Eimear McAllister and Joe McVey will take effect on 1 January 2021. A further Commissioner, Joelle Black, will take up the appointment with effect from 1 April 2021. These appointments will be for three years.


Background

The Parades Commission for Northern Ireland was established in 1997 and took on its full powers in 1998 through the Public Processions (Northern Ireland) Act 1998. The Commission operates as a Non-Departmental Public Body sponsored by the Northern Ireland Office.


Under the terms of the Act, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland is responsible for making appointments to the Parades Commission. The appointments are made in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 1 of the Act.


Further information on the Parades Commission for Northern Ireland can be found here.


Biography of Appointees

Rev Dr Graham Forbes is a retired Anglican clergy and former Provost, St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh. He has held a wide variety of public appointments including former chair of the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator, chair of the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland, Armed Forces Pay Review Body and Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission.


Derek Wilson is a former banker who chaired the Northern Ireland mortgage committee of UK Finance. He currently serves on the Northern Ireland Housing Executive Board, and Audit and Risk Assurance Committee.


Marian Cree is Legal Service Oversight Commissioner for Northern Ireland and formerly the Northern Ireland representative at the Competition and Markets Authority.


Eimear McAllister is a Barrister who now focuses on legal services regulation. She is currently Chair of fitness to practise panels for the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), a member of a High-Speed Two Ltd (HS2) property acquisition panel and a member of the Parole Board.


Joe McVey is CEO of Brain Injury Matters, an organisation supporting those impacted by acquired brain injury. He holds a number of board and trustee positions and is currently serving on the Board of the Equality Commission.


Joelle Black is a Barrister who is Principal Public Prosecutor with the Public Prosecution Service. She is a serving Commissioner with the Parades Commission and is due to stand down on 31 March 2021, but will now assume a further three year period of appointment.


Terms of appointment

These positions are part-time for a period of three years.


The position of Chair attracts a fixed annual remuneration of £50,000 and the member position receives a fixed annual remuneration of £22,000.


These positions are not pensionable.


Political Activity

All appointments are made on merit and with regards to the statutory requirements. Political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity in defined categories to be made public.


None of the appointees has declared any political activity in the past five years.


Regulation

The Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointment (OCPA) regulates these appointments and an independent panel member oversaw all stages of the process.


Statutory Requirements

The Secretary of State has made these appointments in accordance with the Public Processions (Northern Ireland) Act 1998.