Fine Gael and Labour already signed up to Budget strategy – Ó Caoláin
Sinn Féin Dáil leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin has confirmed that the Taoiseach Brian Cowen has issued no invitation to him to attend pre-Budget talks, in contrast to the earlier letter from Green Party leader John Gormley which was for all-party talks.
Deputy Ó Caoláin said:
“The Taoiseach is inviting the Fine Gael and Labour leaders to pre-Budget talks because they have already signed up to the Government’s Budget strategy. Both Eamon Gilmore and Enda Kenny have committed themselves to the 3% budget deficit target by 2014. To reach this target the Government will impose a series of savage budgets, slashing and burning the economy and worsening the recession.
“In his letter to me on 11th October Green Party leader John Gormley spoke of talks involving all parties and, allegedly, without pre-conditions. I have replied that Sinn Féin is open at all times to meaningful political engagement but that we will not be part of a consensus based on the 3% by 2014 budgetary strategy. (I am now publishing my reply to John Gormley.)
“Now we have the Taoiseach writing only to Fine Gael and Labour, thus exposing John Gormley’s initiative as a sham. The real consensus that has emerged is between Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, the Greens and Labour – a political conspiracy to impose savage cuts.
“In contrast Sinn Féin will stand with communities against the cuts, for jobs and for real recovery.” ENDS