Tag Archives: Enda Kenny

Enda gets confused

In the Dáil on 19 June 2012, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin (Cork South Central) complained that there was not enough northsouthery:

[...] We have had good relations since the Good Friday Agreement and there have been good initiatives under the various North-South bodies and agencies that were subsequently established, from InterTradeIreland to the Food Safety Promotion Board and from Tourism Ireland to Waterways Ireland. In the early days, these had concrete, substantive, project-based achievements that delivered considerable momentum. Nothing of that calibre is in evidence currently.

With the British Government and the Northern Executive, will the Taoiseach commit to examining the North-South agenda seriously, in particular the review of North-South bodies, which has been waiting for some time to be signed off on? What are the conclusions of the review and what is the Government’s response to an additional North-South agency?

Taoiseach Enda Kenny (FG, Mayo) replied:

There was no conclusion at the meeting on Friday about additional bodies. Clearly, there were a number of issues outstanding in regard to some of the existing bodies. For instance, the Minister, Deputy Deenihan, committed to working with his counterpart in respect of the continued planning of the Erne Canal, which has been an issue for a very long time. There is no funding for it now, but there is no reason to believe one cannot put in place a strategy and a plan to open it. It would have enormous implications for tourism.

For “Erne” read “Ulster”: the NSMC decided not to extend Waterways Ireland’s remit so Ireland’s most insane current canal proposal is not on WI’s things-to-do list. The Ulster Canal is only rhe second most insane current canal proposal, although there is a new competitor entering the field.

 

From the Dáil

Questions – Northern Ireland Issues, Dáil Éireann Debate Vol. 729 No 2 Unrevised

Deputy Gerry Adams:

[...] The Taoiseach might update us on other flagship projects such as the Ulster Canal — at least, it was described as a flagship project at the time it was launched. [...]

The Taoiseach:

[...] A number of issues were identified which clearly, from any political point of view, would be of interest and benefit to the infrastructure and the economies North and South. The Deputy mentioned some which have been under discussion for a long time. Were we not obliged to pay €3 billion to Anglo Irish Bank for the next ten years, it would be great to be able to tell the Deputy that the Government could now deal with the Ulster Canal or a number of other issues. Unfortunately, that is not the way it is at present. Consequently, from that perspective the Government will continue to commit itself to working diligently in the interests of the development of the economies North and South and, in consequence, of the entire island. [...]

[...] Deputy Adams knows we could deal with the Ulster Canal and many other issues in the north west and elsewhere in the country if we did not have this imposition and burden, but that is a fact of life. [...]

[Emphasis mine]

Northern Sound News Details Jul 07 2011

[...] The Project Co-Ordinator for the regeneration of the Ulster Canal says he is not concerned about the funding issue. Gerry Darby says he is still confident that the Ulster Canal regeneration is on track.

What is the basis for that confidence?

 

Waterways restoration? No thanks

An article in the Irish Times about railway restoration has prompted me to set out my views on waterways restoration. Essentially, I don’t believe public funds should be spent on projects that won’t provide a decent return, but I do favour small-scale conservation, opening up walking and cycling routes along waterways and marketing them to industrial heritage enthusiasts (and others).