| Headcount 2001
It's the Portadown News election special!
The ballots have been
printed, the speeches have been written, the
alcopop bottles have been filled with smuggled
petrol. Yes - election fever has gripped
Portadown. Once again the good people of our
beloved town ask that all-important question:
"Are there still more Protestants than
To guide you through the difficult decisions
that lie ahead, namely: "What kind
of Protestant or Catholic are you?" we've
asked the candidates to summarise their
Ulster Unionist Party
Portadown holds a special place in my
heart. After all, I wouldn't be party leader if I
hadn't caused all that trouble at Drumcree back
in 1995. Now piss off.
Democratic Unionist Party
The message I'll be taking to
Westminster is: "Pope John Paul is The
Antichrist". Once the English understand
that, their whole attitude to Ulster will change.
I'll be continuing our policy of saying
nice things on TV, while secretly plotting the
downfall of civilisation.
Tiocfaidh Ar La!
I'll ensure that the Catholic people of
Portadown never again feel intimidated by their
Protestant neighbours. Intimidating Catholics is
I'll be having some friends
around for a meal, then watching the results on
Newsnight. You're not invited.
After the all-Ireland socialist
revolution, there'll be peace and jobs for
everyone. Also, Christmas will be the way it was
when you were little, and it will only ever rain
You don't need a dick to succeed in
Ulster politics. You just need to BE
It's important to bring the correct
identification with you when you go to vote. To
accommodate Portadown's social diversity, a wide
range of documentation is now acceptable:
Electoral Ward A.
. . . . . . Electoral Ward B
British Passport. . . . . . . . . .
TV licence. . . . . . . . . . . . . .Court
Mortgage statement. . . . . . .Rent arrears
Wage slip. . . . . . . . . . . . . . UB40
Gun licence. . . . . . . . . . . . . Gun
How to Vote
political participation can be confusing for many
people in Portadown, and the proportional
representation system only complicates matters.
The Portadown News has compiled this handy
cut-out-and-keep guide to voting in Northern
- As you approach the polling station,
accept all leaflets offered to you. These
people will remember your face.
- Say hello to the policeman or 'community
guarding the door.
- Point at any UN Observers present and
"Shouldn't you be in Zimbabwe?"
- Show your identification to the nice old
- Receive your ballot, noting with alarm
the unique serial
number printed on the bottom.
- Enter the booth, and savour the illusion
- Write '1' beside the candidate who has
threatened you most recently.
- Write '2' beside a moderate candidate, so
you can kid yourself you're not really
as bigoted as everyone else in this town.
- Write '3' beside the Women's Coalition
candidate, because they could use a bit
more talent on 'Newsline'.
- Think to yourself: "That'll change
the fucking world, eh?"
Note: Sinn Fein voters should repeat this
procedure until their bus leaves for the next
'Jesus votes DUP' - claim
by our religious affairs correspondent, Helen
Jesus would vote DUP
claims Ken Elliot, High Priest at Portadown's
Bethany First Presbyterian Church. The
controversial claim was made during Mr Elliot's
"The signs are clear, to the
righteous," screamed Mr Elliot from his
pulpit. "Jesus was unemployed, lived with
his mum, hung around with his mates all day
talking politics, and was always getting into
trouble with the Romans. Clearly he was a DUP
However a spokesperson for the Electoral
Commission has denied Mr Elliot's claims.
"Mr Christ has been removed from the voting
register," she told us, "as he has been
dead for 1,972 years."
US fact-finding mission
by our American correspondent, Brad
Arizona Senator Mick
O'Malley is back in Portadown for another
election 'fact-finding' mission. Speaking to our
reporter yesterday, the Senator outlined the
facts he hopes to find.
"The main facts I plan to find concern
British human rights abuses, RUC brutality, and
harassment of Sinn Fein community
representatives," he explained. "I may
find some other facts, but those are the ones I'm
really interested in."
Senator O'Malley has a long history of
fact-finding in Northern Ireland. His previous
- Republican paramilitaries don't sell
- RUC patrols regularly kill and eat
- Queen Victoria personally ordered the
By complete coincidence Senator O'Malley is
himself currently campaigning for re-election in
Arizona, under the slogan: "O'Malley
Electrocutes More Blacks".
Health, education, transport:
these are the issues we'd be voting on if we
lived in a normal country. But as the candidates
know we'll be voting along purely sectarian
lines, they'll be careful not to raise these
subjects during the campaign. To remind our
readers of what will be happening behind the
scenes while we continue our 400-year-old
pointless argument, we've taken a closer look at
the stories that really affect our lives.
Wards may close
services at Craigavon Hospital are under threat
again after the Health Trust spent £250,000 on a
coffee machine for the trustees' boardroom. The
hand-built gold-plated Italian machine is the
first of its kind in Northern Ireland, delivering
what some experts have described as:
"A blend to die for."
After a public meeting
yesterday in Portadown Golf Club's Strictly
Private Room, the Health Trust issued a statement
defending its decision.
"We appreciate that people
without private health insurance might be worried
by this development," said the statement.
"However we would remind the public that
when you've to work late into the afternoon
appointing your wives and boyfriends to health
quangos, you need the best damn coffee money can
Smaller class sizes
Minister Martin McGuinness has promised to halve
class sizes across Northern Ireland. Over the
summer holidays, contractors will install wooden
partitions in classrooms, bringing the average
class size down from 600 sq.ft to 300 sq.ft.
"As you know I'm no fan of
partition, but budgets have to be cut,"
explained Mr McGuinness yesterday. "Once
people had jobs AND children, but now they tend
to have either jobs OR children. Consequently it
is unfair to make working people pay for
The Education Minister's new
programme has received the support of Dr Penny
Guardian, Professor of Sociology at Queen's
University. "Only stupid lazy people have
children these days," says Professor
Guardian. "Consequently children are
increasingly stupid and lazy as well. In my
opinion, educating the present generation is a
complete waste of money."
future of local transport was revealed yesterday
with the publication of Craigavon Borough
Council's "Transport 2020" plan. The
£2-million consultant's report was compiled in
the bar at the Silverwood Hotel, with additional
input from hauliers, car dealers and people who
own land near the motorway.
Its proposals cover five main
Council will lobby the Government to reclassify
obesity as a disability. This will entitle most
local women to a free car.
prevent further disruption to rail services, the
main line through Lurgan will be ripped up and
sold to the gypsies. Passengers will be
transferred between Moira and Portadown by army
Kilwilkee Community Representative Brendan
McAlinden has described the proposal as "A
victory for common sense."
discourage stone-throwing, buses will no longer
have windows. Drivers will navigate using GPS
satellite equipment, while passengers will
identify their stop by smell.
prevent fertility problems, all cyclists will be
required to tie a pillow onto their saddle for
any journey of more than 3 miles. To reduce
punctures on the cycle path network, Buckfast
will be sold only in plastic bottles.
network will be completely restored. This will
allow local councillors to travel to tourism
The Portadown News
"Democracy is the worst possible
type of government, except all the others that
have been tried" - Sir Winston Churchill