Seanad must become a truly representative forum – Ó Donnghaile
Speaking after attending the address to the Seanad by An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Sinn Féin Senator Niall Ó Donnghaile welcomed his remarks that the franchise to elect members of the Seanad should be extended to all Irish citizens and that specifically, Senators from the Six Counties should be elected to the Upper House.
Speaking from Leinster House this evening Seanadóir Ó Donnghaile said;
“While I have no doubt many of my colleagues will take great exception with much of what An Taoiseach had to say to us this afternoon, I want to reflect on his remarks regarding Seanad reform and the North specifically.
“Any new move to include the North in the Oireachtas is welcome; these should include fulfilling the longstanding promise of granting speaking rights for Northern MPs in the Dáil.
“Taoiseach Varadkar indicated today that all Irish citizens should have a vote to elect a reformed Seanad. He also indicated that provision should be made within the context of that reform, for Senators from the North to be elected.
"Seanad reform is long overdue and is supported by the vast majority of people.
“Leo Varadkar has said that never again will an Irish Government abandon citizens in the North; any move to reform the Seanad must move speedily and ensure it becomes reflective of and elected by citizens in all of our 32 counties and from among our global diaspora.
“Then we will have a Seanad Éireann that is reflective, effective and that we can all be proud of.”