Seanad debates

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business


10:30 am

Photo of Ivana BacikIvana Bacik (Independent) | Oireachtas source

I wish to echo the words of Senator Michael McDowell about the appalling intimidation campaign being directed at individuals in Quinn Industrial Holdings, and I absolutely endorse what he said about the need for a task force. The appalling injuries inflicted on Kevin Lunney are really despicable. It is dreadful to see what appears to be an unconscionable failure of policing and justice in the Border region.

I would also like to express my condolences to the family of Gay Byrne. I did not have an opportunity to do so yesterday. I thank the Ceann Comhairle for putting a book of condolences in place here in Leinster House. That is very appropriate.

I second Senator Humphreys' amendment concerning the dementia unit and the call for the Minister for Health, Deputy Harris, and the Minister of State, Deputy Finian McGrath, to come before the Seanad to discuss it.

Senator Mac Lochlainn and others have mentioned the O'Farrell case. I wish to support other colleagues in asking the Leader for a debate on the need for a public inquiry into the death of Shane O'Farrell. Like others, I met Lucia O'Farrell, Gemma O'Farrell and other members of the family yesterday. Senator Norris has been really strong on this in the Seanad. Motions calling for a public inquiry have been passed in both the Dáil and the Seanad. The Minister for Justice and Equality has unfortunately narrowed the terms of reference. We need to reiterate and emphasise our calls for a full public inquiry into this case and the various failings that led to the tragic death of Shane O'Farrell, who was a law student in Trinity at the time of his death, to help ensure that the sort of failings and lapses that led to his death are not allowed to happen again in our system.


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