A Lagan Valley general election candidate has issued a video statement urging voters to unite behind a rival candidate.
On the eve of Thursday’s general election, Jonny Orr posted a video on his campaign Facebook page telling voters that it would be “a very bad idea” to elect him, and urging people to throw their support behind the UUP’s Robbie Butler.
The independent candidate, who suffers from Crohn’s disease, posted: “You can still protest your vote through me on Thursday but unofficially I’m out of this election.”
In the video, he says: “I’m chronically ill, I lack experience and I have no transition team in place to take over. It would be a very bad idea to elect me to the MP seat of Lagan Valley at this point in time.
“I am going to find a way to get better and in two years come back and win a council seat. If I work hard that will happen.”
Describing the election as a head-to-head contest between the DUP’s Jeffrey Donaldson and the UUP’s Robbie Butler, Mr Orr continues: “Here’s your choices, the DUP or a guy who spent 20 years as a firefighter putting his life at risk for other people - the guy that has the makings of a great leader. That man is Robbie Butler.
“On Thursday you will see me standing with him [Robbie Butler] and more importantly he will get my personal vote and I hope he gets yours too, but it’s your choice. Our fate is in your hands.”
Last month Mr Orr sparked controversy with a Facebook post announcing his candidacy in which he likened the pain of his Crohn’s disease to being raped.
He later posted a video statement refusing to apologise or reword his post, stressing that his critics do not know the pain of living with Crohn’s - a type of inflammatory bowel disease - and revealing that he was “seriously sexually assaulted by a sportsperson” when he was “younger”.
The posts and video have since been removed from his Facebook page.
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