Sinn Féin MEP, Matt Carthy, has called on the government to refrain from selecting a candidate from "the usual old boys club" when choosing state's next EU commissioner. The Midlands North West MEP said that a very clear message had been delivered by the electorate during the recent elections and that the government should heed that message.
Speaking on the day when he officially begins his term as a MEP, Mr. Carthy said:
"The government were sent a very clear message by the electorate in May. In proposing a new commissioner, Fine Gael & Labour have an opportunity to show that they have listened to the voters.
"The choice facing government is clear; they can select someone like Phil Hogan or Eamon Gilmore, who have embraced the austerity agenda which voters roundly rejected, or they can propose someone who will reflect the needs and wants of not only Ireland but ordinary people across the European Union.
"The message that the Irish government, in conjunction with our representatives in the European Parliament, should be bringing to the heart of the EU institutions is one that states clearly that the austerity agenda has failed; that money paid-out in servicing bank debt needs to be returned to the Irish people and that a major job creation stimulus programme is required in countries like Ireland.
"Appointing someone from the usual old boys club will send the wrong message."