/Taoiseach must emerge from hiding and issue a public statement on entire Zappone debacle, says the Rural Independents – TheLiberal.ie – Our News, Your Views

Taoiseach must emerge from hiding and issue a public statement on entire Zappone debacle, says the Rural Independents – TheLiberal.ie – Our News, Your Views

The former Minister Zappone debacle stinks of cronyism and elitism according to the Rural Independent TDs. It also signals that those who hold high office are deemed above the law, while at the same time continuing to prohibit a cruel ban on children from receiving their First Holy Communion and Confirmation sacraments.

The Leader of the Rural Independent Group of TDs, Deputy Mattie Mc Grath stated:
“The Taoiseach must break his silence and explain how it is acceptable to allow political elites and the Tánaiste to enjoy a bash at the five-star Merrion hotel, but on the other hand, not acceptable to allow holding a first holy communion.”

“This week, the government have stooped to a new low, taking the highly unusual and extraordinary step to publicise legal advice from the Attorney General – relayed from the government press office, in a blatant attempt to provide cover for the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar’s attendance, at a party organised by his pal, former Minister Katherine Zappone, for 50 people at the Merrion Hotel on July 21.”

“The Attorney General’s advice paints the picture that the regulations provide for organised outdoor events and gatherings of up to 200 people. However, when the government announced these regulations on June 7th, it was made clear that such capacity related to outdoor venues with a minimum accredited capacity of 5,000.”

“Major questions arise as to why the Attorney General would peculiarly intervene now, despite remaining silent since Covid regulations were first introduced in March 2020.”

“In fact, since that announcement and the associated Failte Ireland issued guidelines, many family and social gatherings across the country have been completely precluded. This occurred due to the legal interpretation and advice surrounding the very same regulations which the government now claim actually allowed for the Katherine Zappone event to proceed.”

“The outright hypocrisy by the government on this entire Zappone debacle has been truly flabbergasting. The Zappone appointment and now the government attempt to give the Merrion Hotel event retrospective legal legitimacy completely undermines public confidence in this government.”

“Accordingly, we are calling on the Taoiseach to come out of hiding and issue a crystal-clear public statement on this entire matter. He must also make himself available to answer questions and address why the Zappone organised party, is receiving such special protection from the current government. He must also address the links between that party and her appointment as special envoy, six days later by the cabinet.”

“Ireland’s democracy cannot be eroded for personal advantage in this way by anyone. The antics of Fine Gael Ministers with the support of Fianna Fáil and the Greens over the past week treats the public with utter contempt and undermines our hard-won democracy.”

“The Taoiseach has a responsibility as head of government, to stop fumbling on this crisis and issue a decisive and accountable public statement. Failure to do so, will illustrate once again, his willingness to tolerate anything if it means holding onto to the Taoiseach’s office and the trappings of power,” concluded Deputy Mc Grath.

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