“Having already lost the political and democratic arguments on Irish water, reports that Eurostat will rule that the state funds spent on Irish Water will have to stay on the balance sheet mean that the Irish government has now categorically lost the economic rationale as well”. So said Sinn Féin MEP and member of the European Parliament’s Economic & Monetary Affairs committee, Matt Carthy. The decision confirms that Irish Water has been a complete blunder for the Government since the start, he said.
“The anticipated ruling from Eurostat will come as a blow to the Government and underline the complete shambles that has been the establishment of Irish Water.
“From the get go, Irish Water has lurched from blunder to disaster, highlighting the complete incompetence of the Government and I truly believe that this ruling will be the final nail in the coffin for the utility.
“The fact that over 50% of people have not paid their bills demonstrates further that, as a revenue raising measure, Irish water has failed utterly.
“All of this originates from the fact that the current Government is completely out of touch with the people and failed to understand the huge and overwhelming opposition to water charges.
“Their scrambled attempts to make water charges more palatable to the Irish people have not only failed here at home but appear to also have failed in the eyes of the European Institutions.
“Sinn Féin has consistently argued that water services should be retained in public ownership and investment in our water infrastructure should take place through direct Government spending and through sensible Government borrowing if required.
“It is time for the Irish Government to accept the wishes of the Irish people and scrap water charges once and for all. They had long ago lost the political argument – now any semblance of an economic rationale for the establishment of Irish water is in absolute shatters.”