The Conservatives have highlighted the opportunism of the Ulster Unionist Party in leaving the Executive now.
Spokesman Neil Wilson said: “The Ulster Unionists have removed themselves from the Executive because they have finally recognised what the public has known for years – the Executive is a joke”
“We have long argued for the need for an Opposition unfortunately the UUP were taken for fools by the DUP and Sinn Fein and have accepted for years their pathetic role as ‘junior partners’.
“The idea that there is some principle involved in this relating to the existence of the IRA is laughable. The dogs in the street have known the IRA still exist so to feign outrage now is beyond absurd.”
Mr Wilson went on to state that the fallings of the Executive were now impacting on every aspect of life in Northern Ireland.
“The economy in NI is stagnating and the primary reason is this directionless Executive. In Westminster the Conservative government has taken the tough decisions that the DUP, SF, UUP, SDLP and Alliance have ducked and the economy is recovering.”