AFTER new figures revealed six out of every ten people in Limerick had not paid the household charge, a protest has been confirmed for Saturday.
Statistics released over the weekend show that in Limerick City, 58 per cent of the 20,380 properties liable to pay the €100 fee had not registered.
In the county area, the figure was higher with 60 per cent of the 46,473 homes eligible for payment not yet registered.
Now, with thousands expected in the city on Saturday for the start of the Riverfest celebrations, the Campaign Against Household and Water Taxes are to capture the spirit of May Day with a protest rally outside City Hall from 1pm.
Campaign spokesman Cian Prendiville said: “Mass non-registration has been achieved, with around 60% of Limerick households boycotting this tax. Now we need to step up the opposition and demand the axing of this tax. The opinion polls show that even of those who paid, many are opposed to this tax. And now the warning of the campaign that this charge will rise and become more taxes is borne out with the new plans for water taxes. The protest is our chance to say no to all these taxes, and to ordinary people being made pay for a crisis we didn’t cause.”
Mr Prendiville said it is “apt” the march is to take place over the May Day holiday, “which is an historic day celebrating the struggles of ordinary people against oppression over the decades.”
Sinn Fein’s Limerick City North councillor Maurice Quinlivan said the fact just 58% of city families have paid the tax shows the government should reject the plan.
However, he added: “The Government instead of listening to the people, move with proposed new water charges onto the next round of stealth taxes to pay off European banking debts.”
He said government, instead of introducing a further charge in 2014, should take money from the Pension Reserve Fund to replace the country’s infrastructure.