After agreeing to pay for a ferry that doesn’t work, and to cover the world’s biggest heating bill, recriminations are once again flying at Stormont over the failure to organise this year’s Christmas party, which had been planned as ‘a drinks-related celebration in a premises which brews and ferments alcoholic beverages’.
“No-one’s really sure how this went awry,” said senior civil servant Barnaby Pen-Pusher, “there was cross-party party support, the drinks were lined up, baby-sitters had been organised and there was the will to celebrate. I guess implementation just let us down.”
The party had been proposed early in 2016 and had full ministerial backing. Craft brewer Hipster Yeast had been engaged to provide the premises and had even agreed to ‘bring in some lemonade for the puritans and Pioneers, so they wouldn’t moan about ‘Devil’s Buttermilk’, but that seems to be where planning ended. No further action occurred after February.
A whistle-blower told the Executive mid-August that no invites had materialised and it looked like ‘the whole thing was going to shite’, but no-one seems to have got off their arse in response. “We’re all very disappointed,” said a Stormont insider, “I’d bought a new outfit and light-up antlers. We’d turn up the heat on the minister if we could, but it’s running full tilt all the time as it is’.”
The Executive Sandards Committee is now looking into who is responsible and how to rescue a party from the wreckage at this stage. “Someone’s to blame for this, but no-one wants to rock the boat,” says Pen-Pusher.
“Not that the boat works, like.”