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Programme for Government must bring about real change - Ó Caoláin

12 June, 2007

Commenting on the news that Fianna Fáil and the Green Party have agreed to participate in a cross-party Government, Sinn Féin Dáil leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said that a new Programme for Government must bring about real change. He said Sinn Féin would decide on how it would vote in the Dáil on Thursday on the basis of the Programme for Government presenting. He stated:

“We are now faced with a cross-party Government including parties as diverse as the Green Party and the Progressive Democrats, as well as Independents. Fianna Fáil leader Bertie Ahern has opted for a combination which he hopes will guarantee his administration maximum stability. He hopes that the defection of either the Greens or Independents at any stage during the 30th Dáil will not result in the fall of his administration.

“It is for the members of the Green Party to judge whether they are being taken on board as an insurance policy by Fianna Fáil or whether they have made an agreement that represents progress. Sinn Féin will decide our position in the vote for Taoiseach on the basis of the Programme for Government which is presented.

“Writing in the Sunday Independent last weekend, Bertie Ahern stated that the Greens have ‘clear positions on transport, health and education’ that are ‘not incompatible with those of Fianna Fáil’. Taking the health issue alone, the Programme for Government would run totally contrary to the Green position if it does not scrap the disgraceful and totally discredited private for-profit hospital co-location scheme championed by Mary Harney. That will be a crucial test.”ENDS


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