Thursday, 1 April 2021
Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí - Leaders' Questions
I thank the Tánaiste. The bottom line is that the North is way ahead of us in its vaccination roll-out programme and, as a result, will open its society much earlier than us. As I said, this will cause untold damage to the economy in the South, particularly to businesses along the Border, in areas like Dundalk.
I asked the Tánaiste about members of the Garda, teachers and SNAs. The Government made promises to those groups and it has failed miserably to deliver them. In June, when the North opens up, we will depend on the Garda to help patrol the Border. More than 1 million students are going back to school on 12 April. In fairness to teachers and SNAs, they have done a fantastic job over the past number of months under a false promise from the Government. Why did the Government make those false promises? I agree that there are a lot of people who particularly need the vaccine. However, the Government makes promise after promise and then reneges on them and blames someone else. That is not fair and it is about time the Government stood by its actions instead of blaming somebody else. Gardaí are breaking up house parties and stopping people from crossing the Border. Teachers and SNAs have done a fantastic job. Why did the Government make false promises to those people? I ask the Tánaiste, please, to answer that question.