Counterpoint: Selective Internment and BCCI (Bank of Credit and Commerce International) Collapse

Counterpoint: Selective Internment and BCCI  (Bank of Credit and Commerce International) Collapse

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Belfast, Havelock House, Lisburn, West Belfast, Western Isles




Transmission 07/11/1991


29min 26sec




1 inch



Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

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It is illegal to download, copy, print or otherwise utilise in any other form this material, without written consent from the copyright holder.


Kate Smith introduces the current affairs programme. The topics are selective internment and the BCCI [Bank of Credit and Commerce International] collapse, with contributions including pre-recorded interviews and in-studio panel discussion. 

An increase in violence has led to increasing calls for the introduction of selective internment in Northern Ireland. The past history of internment in Northern Ireland, in the early to mid-1970s, is illustrated through archive footage - the women of Belfast banging bin lids in the street, signalling the beginning of internment roughly 20 years previously, followed by scenes army officers breaking into homes to make arrests. 

Paddy Joe McClean [Tyrone civil rights leader and former internee] states that "when a person is interned, they are taken away and denied their liberties." He also observes that it [internment] is used as "an instrument of oppression". 

Paddy Devlin [SDLP founder and Stormont MP 1969-72], Sam Beattie [Police Federation] and Gen. Sir Anthony Farrar-Hockley [Commander, Land Forces NI 1970-71] offer their opinions on the issue, with the general consensus being that previously [in the 1970s] internment was "an unmitigated disaster".

In studio, Ken Maginnis [Ulster Unionist Party MP] believes the current situation calls for selective internment, though states that it needs to happen equally, i.e. to both sides of the community. Seamus Mallon [SDLP MP] rebuffs this idea and says that all internment is selective and that it has a track record of not working, in fact it only ignites more violence. 

The next topic of conversation is the BCCI collapse and how Lisburn and the Scottish Western Isles Councils have lost millions due to their investments in the bank. 


A UTV production.

Presented by Kate Smith 

Producer: Tony Curry 

Director: Alan Hailes 

Contributions also from: Torcuil Chrichton, Donald MacLeod (Convenor, Western Isles Council), Calum MacDonald MP (Labour Party), Donny MacLeod, Cllr. Walter Lillburn (Chairman, Finance Committee), Derek Harbinson, Cllr. David Greene (Conservative Party), Cllr. The Rev. William Beattie (Finance Commitee), Cllr. Ronnie Crawford (UUP) and Nick Fielding.



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