Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin TD has called for the full and immediate publication of documents leaked to RTÉ’s This Week programme which appear to shed more light on the confusion and dysfunction surrounding the establishment of Irish Water.
Deputy Martin commented, “Once again we are getting a fuller picture of what is really going on in Irish Water through leaks to the media, rather than through proper transparency. These latest revelations appear to confirm the rushed and confused nature of the process establishing the organisation and lend further weight to my claim last week that access to some senior jobs is being restricted to those already in well paid positions.
“When I put this point to the Taoiseach in the Dáil last week, he dismissed it and made a series of grand claims about transparency in the organisation and his Government’s commitment to ensuring openness. These latest revelations are an early test of that commitment. I am calling on the Taoiseach to order publication of this material so that we can make a judgement on the agreements reached within it. The Taoiseach claimed that the government and Irish water had ‘nothing to hide’.
“Elsewhere today, we also had another Minister seeking to blame the Troika for the mess his colleague Phil Hogan has made of establishing Irish Water. Pat Rabbitte asks us to believe that the Troika’s insistence on speedy establishment of Irish Water is to blame for the €85 million spent on consultants and carve up of senior jobs among a very limited pool of people. Such claims are deeply disingenuous.
“Minister Rabbitte appears not to realise that the commitment to build a national water company modelled on the British privatised utilities has been a cornerstone of Fine Gael policy since before he was in Government. The establishment of Irish Water was rushed for the simple reason that its primary remit is to begin charging customers and it appears to have given the clear instruction to deliver charges as soon as possible, irrespective of cost.”