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Cabinet using housing position to keep Labour backbenchers in line – Ellis

28 November, 2011 - by Dessie Ellis TD


Sinn Féin housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has criticised the cabinet for holding off on the appointment of a new junior minister for housing.

He described the move as an attempt by the cabinet to keep disgruntled Labour backbenchers in line until after the budget.

Ellis continued;

“People are sick and tired of cuts and austerity to pay for a bailout which shouldn’t even be happening. Ordinary working people have had serious drops in their income and many low earners are teetering on the poverty line. Labour promised they would protect these people and they have failed. The upcoming budget is set to be another betrayal.

“Despite the serious issues ongoing in housing, the massive numbers on waiting lists, the huge subsidy of private landlords and the failure to address the spiralling homelessness problem, the role of Minister of State with special responsibility for Housing remains unfilled following Willie Penrose’s resignation.

“The Cabinet is using the temptation of this position to keep Labour TDs supporting their attack on working people, the vulnerable and the old. The question is whether or not ministerial perks are worth more to these TDs than the people who elected them.

“Labour backbenchers are getting increasingly uncomfortable with their leadership’s acquiescence with the policy of the bailout and austerity they railed against in opposition. They know their voters won’t forget and the cabinet are worried.”

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