SPEAKING in the Dáil Labour TD Ciarán Lynch has welcomed the provisions in the Electoral (Amendment) (Political Funding) Bill 2011 which seek to address the gender imbalance in Irish politics, something the Labour Party has sought for many years.
Political decisions made that affect women are made overwhelmingly by men and nowhere more so than in our Parliament. For that reason, it is a hugely significant development that this government is set to introduce legislation to bring a system of gender balance for General Elections. It is badly needed.
FINE Gael Cork North Central Deputy, Dara Murphy, has slammed the Opposition for its failure to engage in the debate on the Legal Services Regulation Bill which was at Second Stage this afternoon (Thursday) in the Dáil.
The Deputy went on to say that twice in the last 24 hours, Sinn Féin and Fianna Fáil failed to come to the Chamber to engage in Dáil proceedings.
“Sitting on the Government benches of the Dáil this afternoon, one wondered if Government Deputies had misread the schedule and gotten the time of the debate for the Legal Services Bill wrong, as almost two hours into proceedings, there was still not one member of either of the two main Opposition parties present in the Chamber. Not only did Fianna Fáil not show up, they also failed to take up their allotted speaking time.
SENATOR John Gilroy has expressed his dismay at the level of engagement by Deputy Richard Boyd-Barrett in terms of the Bretton Woods Agreement legislation which is going through the Houses of the Oireachtas.
“Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett proposed the most extraordinary amendment.
“He called on the government to suspend our membership of the International Monetary Fund.
FINE Gael Cork South Central Deputy, Jerry Buttimer, has said the Government decision not to take a mid-term break next week is to be welcomed as it will give TDs and Senators an opportunity to come to the Dáil to debate issues of public importance.
“The decision taken this morning by the Government not to take a mid-term break next week as scheduled, but to come into the Dáil and Seanad, shows it is committed to increasing Dáil sitting days and to getting the country back on track.
“Year on year, proposals are put forward by the Opposition groups for shorter holidays which are routinely voted down by the Government.
“In this instance, however, the Fine Gael-led Government gave consideration to the Opposition proposal and agreed to forfeit the mid-term break, with both Houses sitting next week.
FIANNA Fáil Finance Spokesman Michael McGrath TD has said the Taoiseach Enda Kenny needs to urgently correct the record of the Dáil “following misleading comments made by Mr. Kenny during Leaders’ Questions about the €700m unsecured, unguaranteed senior Anglo Irish Bank bond that falls due for payment next week”.
Deputy McGrath said, “The Taoiseach has misled the Dáil on an extremely serious matter this morning and it must be urgently addressed as the bond in question falls due for payment next Wednesday, 2nd November.
“The Taoiseach told the Dáil that the €700m bondholder payment due to in Anglo Irish Bank next week must be paid as a result of the promissory note arrangement in place at the bank.
“Reconfiguration of our health services involves the expansion of some services as well as the opening of new services and facilities, a point cynically omitted from the technical group’s motion.
“This motion is an attempt to exploit fear for a quick headline. Any reasonable approach to the core issue would at the very least consider and recognise that the Department and HSE are opening new facilities and expanding some services.
FIANNA Fáil Health Spokesperson Billy Kelleher TD has said the Minister for Health James Reilly is using his Special Delivery Unit (SDU) as a smokescreen to hide his own inaction over the crisis at the Mid-Western Regional Hospital in Limerick.
Deputy Kelleher, along with Limerick TDs Niall Collins and Willie O’Dea and Clare TD Timmy Dooley, met with nurses form MWRH at Leinster House in Dublin today (Wednesday, 12 October) after nursing unions held a protest to highlight the worsening situation at MWRH.