Meath East Fianna Fáil Senator Thomas Byrne has called on Government TDs in Meath East to come clean with students about the possible re-introduction of third level fees. Senator Byrne was referring to the national campaign launched by the Union of Students in Ireland to allow students to have their voices heard on the broken promises from this Government in relation to students’ fees.
“Students from Meath and across the country are outraged by the blatant u-turn from Education Minister Ruairí Quinn and his colleagues in Fine Gael and Labour who promised during the General Election campaign that they would not re-introduce third level fees or increase the college registration fee.
“It was obvious from soon after they took up office that the promises Fine Gael and Labour made to students in relation to fees were a just a ploy to win votes. They made these promises having met with officials at the Department of Finance and seen the position with the public finances. I have spoken to so many students and parents in this constituency who took these promises in full faith and now feel let down and angered by the complete change in policy from this Government.
“I am calling on all TDs in Meath East, all of whom are members of the Government parties – Fine Gael’s Regina Doherty and Shane McEntee and Labour deputy Dominic Hannigan – to clearly state what their position is in relation to third level fees. This issue affects the lives of families right across this constituency and they deserve answers.
“It’s time for the Government to stop trying to hide behind reports and to instead level with students about what they are planning in relation to fees. I am calling on them to publish their latest report into third level funding without delay. Deputies Doherty, McEntee and Hannigan can play a role in ensuring that their colleagues in Cabinet do not continue to ignore the very real concerns of students and their families.”