Blaney calls on Independent MEP candidates to spell out their positions on nitrates derogation

Published on: 18 April 2024

Fianna Fáil European Election Candidate, Senator Niall Blaney, is calling on independent candidates in the Midlands-North West Constituency to clarify their positions on the renewal of the nitrates derogation secured by Ireland two years ago.

Senator Blaney says there is a need for clarity and transparency around the position adopted by Independent MEP candidates given the total failure of sitting independent MEPs in the outgoing European Parliament to support the farming community in securing the current derogation.  

Senator Blaney said: “In recent days, another independent candidate has entered the election contest with Ciaran Mullooly announcing his candidacy.  Given how we have been so let down by the positions adopted by all three outgoing independent Irish MEPs on this issue, it is crucial that Mr Mullooly immediately outlines his position with regard to securing the continuation of the nitrates derogation.  

“I have watched with frustration how Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan, the current independent MEP in the Midlands-North West constituency, ardently opposed the renewal of a nitrates derogation that is so crucial for our farming sector.  

“We simply can’t continue to have MEPs elected to represent our region in the European Parliament who are going to so blatantly work against the interests of farmers on an issue so important and crucial for a sector that is the bedrock of our rural economy. 

“I am running to be elected as an MEP to fight tooth and nail for our region including the farming sector in the next European Parliament. Central to that is committing to fight to maintain and renew our nitrates derogation.  Other candidates need to be equally clear on where they stand on this issue.   

“We know how our current Independent MEPs in this constituency and in others worked against the interests of farmers on the derogation in the outgoing Parliament. It’s essential that Mr Mullooly and other independent candidates make their positions clear to the electorate immediately so that the public can be fully informed before choosing the candidates to best represent them in Europe for the next five years.”