Senators criticise cancellation of Cork event due to security threat to Taoiseach

Sinn Féin Senator calls for Seanad debate on water charges

Fine Gael Senator Colm Burke said it was "very sad" that a Cork hotel had to cancel an event due to the security risks posed to Taoiseach Enda Kenny, who was due to attend. "I have no difficulty with people holding a peaceful protest outside a meeting," he said, "however, the level of abuse and threats made to people has been outrageous."

Mr Burke said while he welcomed anyone who wanted to organise a peaceful protest, he would ask them to at least respect others and allow people to attend a political party meeting without being abused.“What has happened over the past two to three weeks is outrageous.”

Brian Ó Domhnaill (FF) said it was disgraceful that the Taoiseach would be prohibited from attending an event, whether party political, community or whatever else, due to the threat posed in a democratic republic where democracy and freedom were fought for more than 100 years ago. “It is a disgrace that individuals who call themselves protectors or democrats would in some way try to incite or spark dangerous situations.”

Paschal Mooney (FF) said that no taoiseach had been prevented from attending a public function in the history of the State. "Such action is a disgrace and the people who engaged in such activity are not true democrats," he said.


David Cullinane (SF) said people would not be fooled by the Government's "election stunt" on water charges. "They know that the Government is trying to introduce the principle of the charge and once that is introduced, the charge will go up and up," he added. He said the Seanad had yet to debate the issue. "There was a lengthy debate in the Dáil yesterday, but there has been no debate in the Seanad," he added.

Michael O'Regan

Michael O'Regan

Michael O’Regan is a former parliamentary correspondent of The Irish Times