Representatives of the board of Údarás na Gaeltachta have met the Fianna Fáil leader Mícheál Martin and Fianna Fáil TDs Éamon Ó Cuív and Mícheál Kitt at Leinster House to discuss the Government’s decision to remove the democratic elections to the board of Údarás na Gaeltachta.
The meeting was attended by Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill, Councillor Seán Ó Tuairisg, and Val Hanley, who represented the other Fianna Fáil board members of Údarás na Gaeltachta. They voiced their serious concerns about the future of Údarás following the Government’s decision last week to remove the power from the people to elect those who run the agency.
“Fianna Fáil strongly believes that those living in the Gaeltacht must retain the democratic right to elect to the board of an tÚdarás,” Fianna Fáil leader Mícheál Martin said after the meeting. “These are the people whose lives are directly affected in so many ways by the decisions made at Údarás board meetings. They deserve to know that these decisions are not motivated by politics, but are instead taken in the best interests of the Gaeltacht.
“The Government is putting a price on democracy by claiming that the country can’t afford to allow the public an input into who is appointed to Údarás. But these are relatively small elections that only take place every five years. They can hardly be considered a drain on the public finances.”
Mr Martin accused Fine Gael and Labour of refusing to allow the people have a say despite running an election campaign calling for a more transparent and democratic approach to board appointments. He said he would fight this move.