Sinn Féin’s party whip Aengus Ó Snodaigh accompanied party president, Gerry Adams, to a meeting today with An Taoiseach to discuss the government’s Dáil Reform proposals.
While welcoming today’s engagement, Deputy Ó Snodaigh said the government, had failed to consult properly with opposition parties on how best to reform the Dáil, prior to presenting a reform package in a fait accompli manner, as it has done recently. He expressed concerns that without meaningful engagement its proposals would have only a limited impact.
He continued: “Sinn Féin has made clear its criticism of the government for failing to engage in any meaningful way with opposition parties on their plans to reform the Dáil. Instead, their priority is in rushing through changes so they can be made during the Autumn Dáil schedule.
“Today’s meeting with the Taoiseach should have taken place at an earlier date so as to allow a thorough engagement, where all of the political parties could work towards building a consensus on the proposed changes.
“The proper platform to achieve this was the Oireachtas Dáil Reform Committee where time could have been set aside to carefully consider these important matters.
“The government’s political reform proposals are hardly radically and instead amount to a tweaking of the weekly schedule. Sinn Féin has put forward a number of progressive measures that if implemented would maximise a TD’s productivity whilst maintaining effective representation at a constituency level.
“We have also presented a radical programme for more extensive political reform in our document Towards a New Republic which provides a framework that would ensure a complete overhaul of the political system in the 26 Counties.”