Dáil debates

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

An Bille um an Tríochadú Leasú ar an mBunreacht (Fiosruithe Thithe an Oireachtais) 2011: Céim an Choiste agus na Céimeanna a bheidh Fágtha / Thirtieth Amendment of the Constitution (Houses of the Oireachtas Inquiries) Bill 2011: Committee and Remaining Stages


6:00 pm

Photo of Brendan HowlinBrendan Howlin (Wexford, Labour)

I have specifically designed this in order that it cannot be a numbers game. However, we cannot have the tyranny of the minority either. The tyranny of the majority is one thing, but the notion that a 10% minority could overrule a 90% majority is worse because it would be a negation of fundamental democracy.

The construct of this inquiry system is taking away from the Government. I remember trying to craft the terms of reference of the Morris tribunal which, remarkably, examined my conduct as a Member and that of the then Deputy Jim Higgins but which excluded the conduct of the then Minister for Justice. It is to get away from such occurrences that I propose that it should not be the Executive that would make the decision but a committee of the House in a public forum.


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