Wednesday, 9 March 2011
Nomination of Taoiseach
Gerry Adams (Louth, Sinn Fein)
Gabhaim comhghairdeas arís leat, a Cheann Chomhairle, agus le do chlann. Ní féidir le Sinn Féin tacú leis an moladh an Teachta Kenny a ainmniú mar Thaoiseach. Níl iontas ar an Teachta faoi sin. Ní rud pearsanta é. Tá meas mór agam ar an mandáid a bhfuair Fine Gael.
Sinn Féin set out a number of key priorities during the election campaign. These included the need to reverse budget cuts to public services and social welfare, the need to abolish the universal social charge and to put an end to putting public money into the bad banks. It is hardly surprising that Fianna Fáil does not oppose this nomination given its members put together the programme for Government the new Government will administer. Sinn Féin also set out its view of the need to protect those who are most vulnerable in our society, namely, the poor, the unemployed and those on the margins, as well as those who never would have seen themselves as being economically vulnerable but who now are on the edge of deprivation, suffering and real distress. Sinn Féin also set out its clear opposition to plans by Fine Gael to downgrade the Irish language and has a long-standing view of the need to continue to foster the peace process, to build towards Irish unity and to continue to work with our Unionist neighbours in the North.
Níl clár Rialtas Fine Gael agus an Lucht Oibre ag cloí leis an obair seo. Ní féidir le Sinn Féin tacaíocht a thabhairt d'ainmniú an Teachta Kenny mar Thaoiseach, os rud é go bhfuil sé ag seasamh le chlár Rialtas a chuirfidh géarphlean ceithre bliana Fianna Fáil i gcrích. Tá sé ar intinn aige níos mó d'airgead an phobail a chur isteach sa chóras baincéireachta.
We cannot support a Taoiseach who is prepared to sell important State assets and introduce water charges and property taxes for ordinary households. It is appropriate that we gather here at the beginning of Lent, given what is coming for the citizens of the State. As I said at the outset, this is not a personal issue. I respect the mandate which Fine Gael received and wish the Taoiseach and Government well. It is a huge honour for all of those who will take office and their families. Gabhaim comhghairdeas leo go léir agus guím ádh mór orthu.
The House should be assured that we will not oppose the Government for the sake of it. If, by fluke, positive proposals are brought forward, we will support them. I would also like to address some remarks to the Labour Party and Deputy Gilmore. They had the opportunity to work for a Government without Fianna Fáil or Fine Gael. Is botún agus meancóg mhór é tacaíocht a thabairt do Fhine Gael sa Rialtas agus an Teachta Kenny a ainmniú mar Thaoiseach.
By ruling out all other options for coalition, including with those of us on the left, it undermined its stated aspiration for a Labour Party-led Government and limited the choice presented to the public. Tá slí níos fearr ann. Tá bealach níos fearr ann.
In wishing the incoming Taoiseach and Tánaiste well I wish to make clear that Sinn Féin will provide robust and constructive opposition to the Government and hold it to account for the decisions it takes. Ar an lá seo, tús maith leath na hoibre. Guím ádh mór oraibh uilig.