THOUSANDS of people took part in a march through Limerick city centre this afternoon as part of the We Won’t Pay anti-water charges campaign.
Up to 1,500 people gathered outside City Hall at Merchants Quay with the numbers swelling to around 3,000 as the protestors made their way to Pery Square via Patrick Street and O’Connell Street.
Socialist Party TD, Joe Higgins described the turnout as a “magnificent demonstration of people power” and urged people to continue supporting the campaign to have water charges abolished.
“The massive display of people power that we have seen in Limerick and the length and breadth of this country has left a government that is punch drunk, that is reeling, that is dazed in front of the belt that the working class people have delivered and we are only starting as far as that is concerned,” he said.
“The reason we say ‘no way, we won’t’ pay’ and the reason we say ‘Enda Kenny, not a penny’ is because we already pay for our water, we have paid for it for generations”, he added as he addressed the crowds.
A hearse carrying an Irish Water coffin featured in the march while a headstone reading “In loving memory of Irish Water RIP” was carried by some of those who took part.
“I’ve had enough, I’m here with my fellow Limerick men to say enough is enough. The government will back down, they are like prostitutes, they will sell their souls because they want to stay in power and they will do anything,” said Noel ‘Buster’ Hannon from Garryowen who was one of those who took part in the march.
Chants of “no, way we won’t pay”, “lift the burden off our backs, we won’t pay the water tax” and “ho, ho, ho Kenny has to go” rang out as the march made its way through the city centre.
Cllr Cian Prendiville of the Anti Austerity Alliance said he was thrilled with the turnout for the march and called on Limerick people to take part in a national protest in Dublin on December 10.
“We are hoping to have tens of thousands of people if not hundreds of thousands outside the Dail on a work day in what is turning out to be a general strike with many people taking the day off work in order to go to the protest to deliver the message that we haven’t been tricked, we are not going to be tricked and we won’t’ pay water charges,” he said.