In the Seanad Order of Business I called for the Suspension of Irish Water Operation

Senator Mark Daly: I, too, call for a suspension of the operation of Irish Water. We have seen the Government ignore the reports of its own consultants, PricewaterhouseCoopers, who told it not to establish Irish Water in the way it did. Now it is giving out about the fact that it is not working, even though it was told that it would not work in the first place. I do not know why it is crying because in 2009 Fine Gael policy was to establish Irish Water; therefore, they it has been dealing with this issue a long time. Last week the Government parties were borrowing money to buy votes to win an election. What they have done in the case of Irish Water is borrow money to establish it, although it will end up losing them votes and an election. They seem to be out of touch; their own Ministers were saying people would be charged a modest amount of money. When one is being charged over €180 for the first hour of a call-out to plug a leak and hundreds of euros annually, it is not by any standard a modest amount of money for people who are struggling and who, in many cases, only have €10 at the end of the month for discretionary spending. They keep on squeezing those in the middle with families who are struggling with mortgages and are now going to be struggling with water bills from a quango that they set up. The Government was told not to set up this quango but it did so anyway. Now it is crying that it is in existence even though in 2009 the establishment of Irish Water was in a Fine Gael policy paper.  Members opposite have given out about NAMA, the National Asset Management Agency, and its lack of transparency. I remind them that Fianna Fáil brought in the NAMA transparency Bill—–

Senator Lorraine Higgins: Who brought in NAMA in the first place? Fianna Fáil brought in NAMA. Those are double standards, Senator Daly.

Senator Mark Daly: —–but Members opposite shot it down.

Senator Thomas Byrne: The Government is now spending the fruits of it.

Senator Mark Daly: They wonder why NAMA is not transparent yet they did not want to introduce a measure that would make it transparent.

Senator John Gilroy: Fianna Fáil could have done so when it was in government but it did not.

Senator Mark Daly: Our legislation would have ensured any NAMA property for sale would be put on a website and be available for all to see. This reaction from Members opposite is a bit like crying over Irish Water.  I agree with colleagues opposite who raised the issue of the recent desecration of the grave of W.T. Cosgrave. It is a disgrace that anyone would do this to a former leader and person who served this country. Although we disagree with much of what happened in the past, I agree with colleagues opposite that the desecration of his grave is an absolute disgrace.

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