Fianna Fáil Leader and TD for Cork South Central Micheál Martin has
described as “incompetent” the government’s preparations for plebiscites in
Cork, Limerick and Waterford on directly elected mayors. 

The Cork South Central TD went further in questioning whether the plebiscites
should be held in May, given the fact that there has been no information campaign
to date and many people simply don’t know what they will be voting on.

Deputy Martin said, “The government’s handling of these plebiscites has been
completely incompetent.  We are eight
weeks away from a vote on directly elected mayors and people in Cork, Limerick
and Waterford have no information as to what they’re voting on.  This is an appalling way to treat the public.

“I raised this directly with the Taoiseach in the Dáil this week, and he
acknowledged my point that there is a serious information vacuum and conceded
that there is an onus on government to ensure that people understand what they
are being asked to vote on.  However his
assertion that “eight weeks is enough
time”
is deeply disingenuous and typical of this government’s detached and
arrogant attitude. 

“People in Cork, Limerick and Waterford have been treated shabbily.  They have been told that a plebiscite is
happening but have not been given any information about the question being put
to them.  It calls into question whether these
plebiscites should be held in May at all.

“While I support the concept of directly elected mayors, I have deep reservations
about whether the vote should proceed in eight weeks’ time”, concluded Deputy
Martin.