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Now clear that Tánaiste backed Reilly from the start – McDonald

4 October, 2012 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD

Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald welcomed the Tánaiste’s confirmation that he was the senior Labour Party Minister that Health Minister James Reilly consulted about the extra primary care centres added to Roisín Shortall’s list.

Speaking after an exchange with the Tánaiste during Leaders’ Questions in the Dáil today Deputy McDonald said it is now crystal clear the Eamon Gilmore backed James Reilly over his own party minister from the start contrary to his claims otherwise.

Deputy McDonald said;

“Yesterday Minster Reilly claimed during his Pat Kenny interview that he consulted with senior labour ministers in relation to the location of the primary care centres.

“When I questioned the Tánaiste in the Dáil today he revealed that he was consulted by the Health Minister about the extra primary care centres. He also revealed that Roisín Shortall had come to him with her concerns about Minister Reilly before she resigned her position last week.

“It is now crystal clear that Eamon Gilmore backed Minister Reilly over his own party minister from the very beginning contrary to his own claims that he backed Roisín Shortall.

“He signed off on the extra primary care centres and voted confidence in Minister Reilly in the full knowledge of the concerns raised by his own party minister Roisín Shortall.

“Labour’s 2011 election manifesto promised to encourage and transparency in Government. It promised an end to political cronyism. So why, despite the urging of a growing number within his own party, does the Tánaiste continue to stand behind Minister Reilly and his refusal to make public the criteria used for the location of these primary care centres.” ENDS

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