Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Timmy Dooley has said that recent comments by Minister Michael Ring about his commitment to rural Ireland don’t match with the Government’s actions to date.

“I find Minister Ring’s comments bewildering. Does he really expect the people of rural Ireland to believe what he says when it comes to protecting and enhancing their communities?

“He has supported a Government for the past six years that has systematically hollowed out communities outside of the M50 motorway.

“If he is so committed to rural Ireland, why has he done nothing about the projected closure of nearly 300 post offices up and down the country?

“Why, if he is the champion of rural Ireland, is he allowing the debacle that is the National Broadband Plan to continue?

“Why won’t he stand up to Minister Naughten and say enough is enough, and that the delays in rolling out the NBP must stop.

“Why is he not championing rural communities getting high speed broadband? That is the only way to support enterprise and job creation?.

“It’s clear that Minister Ring is happy to ignore, and let slide, the complete and utter failure of Minister for Communications, Denis Naughten to deliver on these core Government commitments.

“Minister Ring is the go to Minister for bluster and fudging for this government. Every number of months, he is trooped out on national radio to talk about the Government’s commitment to rural Ireland.

“His words mean nothing any more. Rural communities from Donegal all the way to Cork and everywhere in between are sick to the back teeth of broken promises from Fine Gael led governments.

“It is time Minister Ring started to do his job, and exert pressure at cabinet to ensure that post offices are protected, and that high speed broadband is rolled out to rural communities.
“Anything else will be a failure, and the blame rightly will be laid at the feet of both Minister Ring and Minister Naughten,” concluded Dooley.