Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Timmy Dooley TD, says dismantling the rail and bus service is not the answer to the crisis facing CIE.

Deputy Dooley was speaking today after raising a special Dáil debate on the financial crisis engulfing CIE. An auditor’s report released today raised serious concerns about CIE’s ‘ability to continue as a going concern’.

“In the current economic environment, passenger numbers are dropping and the answer is not to dismantle services because the customers you lose will never be regained,” said Deputy Dooley.

“The Government needs to ensure CIE maintains its critical mass of service, a fully operational public transport system is fundamental to any working economy. The company needs to be fit for purpose by providing a comprehensive rural service, which has already been affected by recent budget cuts.

“Minister Varadkar announced an extra €36 million subvention for CIE in July and then seemed to row back on it. When I asked him in the Dáil about this apparent U-turn, he was quite vague and spoke about CIE’s capacity to make significant savings before the funding would be provided.

“There is a huge amount of uncertainty here and we need the Minister to take a handle on the situation. There must be a coherent plan to secure CIE’s future because the current model is clearly not working.”