Sammy Wilson

Sammy Wilson

Infobox MP
honorific-prefix =
name = Sammy Wilson
honorific-suffix = MLA, MP

caption =
office= Minister of the Environment
term_start = 9 June 2008
term_end =
leader = Peter Robinson
predecessor =
successor =
constituency_MP2 = East Antrim
parliament2 =
term_start2 = 5 May 2005
term_end2 =
majority2 = 7,304 (23.0%)
predecessor2 = Roy Beggs
successor2 =
constituency_AM3 = East Antrim
assembly3 = Northern Ireland
term_start3 = 26 November 2003
term_end3 =
majority3 =
predecessor3 =
successor3 =
birth_date = Birth date and age|1953|4|4|df=yes
birth_place = Belfast, Northern Ireland
death_date =
death_place =
nationality = British
spouse =
party = Democratic Unionist Party
relations =
children =
residence =
alma_mater = Queen's University Belfast
occupation =
profession =
religion =

website =
footnotes =

Sammy Wilson (born April 4, 1953, Belfast) is a politician in Northern Ireland and both Member of Parliament and a Member of the Legislative Assembly for East Antrim. [ [ Northern Ireland Assembly Report Wednesday July 1 1999] ]

Educated at Methodist College Belfast, he went on to graduate in Economics and Politics from Queen's University, Belfast and then from Stranmillis Teaching College. Mr Wilson took up a teaching post at Grosvenor Grammar School after graduation where he was to become Head of Economics and Assistant Chief Examiner for A-Level Economics in Northern Ireland.

Wilson began his life in politics as the Democratic Unionist Party Press Officer and in 1981 he was elected as a DUP councillor to Belfast City Council, a position he will resign in June 2008. Mr Wilson became the first person from the party to serve as Lord Mayor of the City in 1985 and did so again in 1999.

Wilson was elected to the Northern Ireland Forum in May 1996 for the constituency of East Belfast (1996-98) and went on to represent this area again after the Northern Ireland Assembly in June 1998.

In the Assembly election of 2003 Wilson was successful in being re-elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in the East Antrim constituency and was joined by fellow East Antrim party candidates George Dawson and David Hilditch. This momentum was carried through to the Westminster Election on 5 May 2005 which saw him being elected as Member of Parliament for East Antrim with 49.6% of the vote.

Wilson is a former member of the Northern Ireland Policing Board and Northern Ireland Housing Council, and at Westminster sits on the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee. He is the DUP spokesperson for Education and Policing, and has special political interest in socio-economic issues. At Westminster he is the Party spokesperson on Education and skills, as well as Housing.

Since the return of devolution to the Northern Ireland Assembly in May 2007, Mr Wilson has been best known for his criticism of Education Minister Caitroina Ruane, and her plans for the abolition of academic selection and the introduction of a comprehensive school system in Northern Ireland.

In June 2008, Mr Wilson became Minister of the Environment, much to the iritation of green and environmental groups. This was because of Mr Wilson's opposition to the creation of an indepedent environmental protection agency and his support of nuclear power. Mr Wilson was the winner of the Green Party's Green Wash award - the MLA most likely to damage the environment. He was also criticised for calling their views on climate change a hysterical pseudo-religion, and saying that the effects of global warming were natural and not man made, even saying "Reasoned debate must replace the scaremongering of the green climate alarmists." He stated that "Resources should be used to adapt to the consequences of climate change, rather than King Canute-style vainly trying to stop it." Peter Doran of the Green Party called this a "deeply irresponsible message," and John Woods of Friends of the Earth likened it to "a cigarette salesman denying that smoking causes cancer," and also said "Ironically, if we listen to him Northern Ireland will suffer economically as we are left behind by smarter regions who are embracing the low carbon economy of the future." [ [ BBC News: Wilson row over green 'alarmists'] ]

Away from politics Wilson is a keen gardener and motorbike enthusiast as well as taking an interest in animals and birds. Mr Wilson is known for his peeler tache. He has frequently courted controversy, particularly when a series of candid holiday photographs showing Wilson nude were published by the "Sunday World". After the incident Martin McGuinness of Sinn Féin addressed the Northern Ireland Assembly by saying "It is also very good to come across someone like Mr Sammy Wilson, whom I have never met, and it is great to see him today with his clothes on." He has also come in for criticism for his recent stance against the Pride parade that now takes place in Belfast. [ [ Berry is Sandbagged by Sunday World] ]

His widest exposure on a UK-wide stage came on "The Eleven O'Clock Show", when he participated in an 'interview' with comedy character Ali G.Despite having his fingers' burned from his Ali G experience Sammy regularly plays the unintentional clown on the Stephen Nolan show, one of Northern Ireland's most popular radio shows.


External links

* [ Official website of Sammy Wilson MP MLA]
* [,9290,-5604,00.html Guardian Unlimited Politics - Ask Aristotle: Sammy Wilson MP]
* [ - Sammy Wilson MP]
* [ Maiden Speech : House of Commons - 18 May 2005]

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