‘Gutless’ Irish roll over for water charges: Gilligan

Mike Dwane

Reporter:

Mike Dwane

'God be with the days of rebel Cork': Cllr John Gilligan said the Irish people no longer had the guts of the people of Cyprus in resisting the troika
THE “days of rebel Cork” are long gone, Cllr John Gilligan has lamented, saying the fight seems to have gone out of the Irish people when it comes to resisting the EU and IMF.

THE “days of rebel Cork” are long gone, Cllr John Gilligan has lamented, saying the fight seems to have gone out of the Irish people when it comes to resisting the EU and IMF.

He was speaking after Cllr Ger Fahy, Fine Gael, updated Limerick City Council on a presentation on Irish Water given at the transport and infrastructure committee.

Such was the issue’s importance, Cllr Gilligan said, that it ought to have been delivered to the full council.

“But there is a reason they won’t speak to the full council and that is they want to keep it as private as possible” before Ireland’s public water infrastructure and collection of domestic water charges was “flogged off to the highest bidder” on the instructions of the troika, the independent councillor declared.

“Unfortunately we no longer have the guts of the people of Cyprus who are standing up to being raped by central Europe. We just don’t have what it takes any more. God be with the days of rebel Cork and all the rest of it. You can’t get a peep out of people these days,” he said.

Fianna Fail’s Cllr Kieran O’Hanlon agreed that the update on Irish Water should have been presented to the full council.

When Mayor Gerry McLoughlin, Labour, threatened to rule him out or order as he had already had a chance to speak on the issue at committee, Cllr O’Hanlon protested he was entitled to raise as a point of order what he regarded as Cllr Fahy’s “wholly inadequate” summary of the debate.

“There is no mention of the fact that they are going to start installing water meters in July. And the fact that none of the 400 jobs that were promised are coming here isn’t mentioned either,” Cllr O’Hanlon said.

Cllr O’Hanlon was referring to the announcement by Minister for Finance Michael Noonan last November that 400 jobs would be created in the city. While the minister declined to give further details at the time, his remarks were widely believed to relate to the possible location of the Irish Water call centre at the former Dell manufacturing facility in Raheen.

It was later confirmed that Limerick was no longer in the running for the employment boost.

Cllr Maurice Quinlivan, Sinn Fein, also agreed that the full council should have been updated on Irish Water and asked whether Limerick City Council would be compensated once its water infrastructure was transferred to the new state water company.