The Secretary of State and the Northern Ireland ministers

Derek Birrell

in Direct Rule and the Governance of Northern Ireland

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780719077579
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701881 | DOI:
The Secretary of State and the Northern Ireland ministers

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This chapter examines the exercise of executive power under direct rule through the role of the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and the tier of Northern Ireland Office ministers. It explains that under the direct rule the Secretary of State and the Northern Ireland Office ministers formed a kind of Northern Ireland cabinet or equivalent to a devolved Northern Ireland executive. This chapter discusses the duties of the Secretary of State under direct rule, the work of Northern Ireland ministers, and the changes in the political roles of the secretaries of state during the transition between direct rule and devolution. It also provides commentaries on the different approaches and priorities of successive secretaries of state and their relationship to the Prime Minister, Westminster and Whitehall.

Keywords: direct rule; Secretary of State; Northern Ireland; ministers; devolution; Prime Minister; Westminster; Whitehall

Chapter.  7585 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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