Michael Colreavy, Sinn Féin TD for Sligo/North Leitrim, has condemned the sell off of the state’s share of Aer Lingus.
Deputy Colreavy was speaking during a special Dáil debate on the sell off of the national airline recently.
The Sligo/North Leitrim Deputy said, “Ireland needs connectivity, which not only includes a sufficient road network and public transport services, it also includes flights in and out of the country.
“Ireland is an island and unless the government propose to use the funds from the sell off of Aer Lingus to build a tunnel connecting us to mainland Europe, there is no getting away from this fact.
“The government have consistently touted Ireland as the best small country in which to do business. This is a bold statement. It requires government infrastructure in key areas of the economy such as broadband, electricity and education.
“Perhaps the government have forgotten a key reason as to why a company might wish to locate in Ireland. It is of course an ability to get here. This isn’t just a deal that the government felt that they should make at this time; it is clearly a deal that the government has wanted to make for some time.
“It is clear that it is part of the Fine Gael agenda of privatisation that has seen the sell off of state assets such as Bord Gáis.,” Cllr Colreavy queried in a statement to the Leitrim Observer this week.
“Can this government really be trusted when they say that they will not privatise Irish water?
“Are the government naïve enough to believe that any agreement that they sign with AIG will be maintained for seven years or longer? IAG has a track record that shows its interest is not in providing jobs or supporting the countries from which their airlines come.
“When Iberia was privatised it was a good employer. Less than one year later it announced that 4,500 jobs would be cut.
“Ireland needs connectivity, which not only includes a sufficient road network and public transport services, it also includes flights in and out of the country.
“The sell off of Aer Lingus is a bad deal for Ireland,” Colreavy concluded.