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Minister using water as cover for disinvestment – Cullinane

26 May, 2016 - by David Cullinane TD

David Cullinane, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Public Expenditure and Reform, has severely criticised Minister Donohoe for his comments during the Sinn Féin Bill on Irish Water.

Deputy Cullinane said:

“The Dáil debate on Sinn Fein’s bill shone a light on the Minister’s political instincts and intentions. He said that the suspension of water charges will mean that “tax revenues will have to be re-directed from elsewhere”.  His party has stood over a narrowing of the tax base with tax cuts for the wealthy, for high earners and for corporations. Yet, despite this fact, the Minister decided to blame ordinary people struggling to get though the week for the subsequent crisis in funding for essential social services.

“Is this the type of right-wing logic we will get from Paschal Donohoe during his tenure as Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform?

“Will he continue to blame the majority of working people for the crisis in funding brought about by his government’s slash and burn approach to health, education, justice and local government – an approach they have undertaken so that the richest people in this State can walk away from paying their fair share?

“We already know that the Irish tax avoidance lobby has the ear of Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil and Labour, and it is clear from the Minister’s tirade last night that this is not going to change one iota under his watch.

“Only last week the Minister’s colleague, Michael Noonan, issued a statement saying that his government will not be looking for any deal on the bank recapitalisation debt. The repayments on that debt is money that is diverted from essential services and capital investment. On this the Minister is strangely silent, but on water charges he shouts from the rooftops.

“Minister Donohoe has embraced the political philosophy of his predecessor in Dublin Central, Bertie Ahern: portray yourself as a man of the people, but don’t forget to fleece the people.”

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