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Sinn Féin only party to oppose water charges - Ó Clochartaigh

8 June, 2011

Following a contentious debate in the Seanad today on the proposed introduction of water charges, Sinn Féin Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh, said that that tweedle dee and tweedle dum politics is alive and kicking, with all parties except Sinn Féin voting in favour of water charges.

Speaking in the Seanad today, Senator Ó Clochartaigh drew the Minister for Environment Phil Hogan’s attention to the gross inequality such a charge would cause for lower income families.

Sinn Féin suggested the alternative of investing the €500m that would be spent on installing new meters should be used to upgrade the diabolical water infrastructure in the state which haemorrhages 58% of the systems treated water before it reaches any domestic dwellings.

Senator Ó Clochartaigh also stated Sinn Féin could not accept any justification for the introduction of such a stealth tax.

“I must reject such a proposal which will clearly inflict hardship on the least well off in our society. Many people are already struggling to pay their bills as it is, and are under huge burdens; the same people are footing the bill for the government’s failed banking policy.

Senator Ó Clochartaigh also drew attention to blatant U-turn of the labour party whose leader made a pre-election promise that no water charges would be introduced on his watch.

He said

“It is becoming very apparent that the Labour party in government are no different to their predecessors and are willing to dance to the Fine Gael tune to the detriment of the ordinary Irish people.”

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