SINN Féin Spokesperson for Justice Pádraig Mac Lochlainn has urged the Government to scrap water charges immediately, in the face of mounting public dissent over the hardship the measures will bring.
Speaking on the Water Services Bill the Dáil today Deputy Mac Lochlainn said: “This Government has come under massive public pressure on water charges. They have been forced to introduce the proposed lower rates. This isn’t something they wanted to do. It’s something they had no choice on. Next Wednesday, however they will be faced with even larger protests.
“Today they can take the opportunity to do the right thing and scrap water charges here and now. I am calling on you to do that. Sinn Féin will be opposing the Government’s Bill as it stands as the only acceptable solution is to abolish water charges, and to dismantle Irish Water.
“Water is a right for all our citizens, the charges being implemented by this Government are unnecessary, unjust and will cause huge hardship to families and communities who have already been devastated by the Government’s relentless pursuit of the austerity agenda.
“These families simply can take no more. You are pushing people over the edge. We have heard so much talk about democratic revolution. There is no democratic revolution in the Dáil. The democratic revolution is on the streets and at the ballot box by ordinary people who say that enough is enough. The continuing trends in the polls show that.
“I am making this call today to urge as many people as possible to turn out for the peaceful protest planned in Dublin on 10 December. I look forward to standing in solidarity with the citizens of this State on Wednesday.
“This Government should own up, admit it is wrong, abolish Irish Water and water charges immediately.”