April 10, 2024
An Ghaeltacht ar láir arís, teastaíonn Aire láidir dár dteanga gan mhoill – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Cháin urlabhraí Gaeilge, Gaeltachta, Ealaíon agus Cultúir Shinn Féin, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, go bhfuil folúntas an d’Aire Stáit na Gaeltachta den cheathrú huair le ceithre bliana anuas, agus d’iarr sé ar an Taoiseach nua Simon Harris Aire nua láidir a roghnú gan mhoill chun an teanga náisiúnta a chosaint agus a chur chun cinn.

Dúirt an Teachta Ó Snodaigh:

“In imeachtaí an lae inné, bhí an Ghaeltacht agus an Ghaeilge fágtha in áit na leathphinginne, agus ní don chéad uair.

“Is mór an trua go bhfuil a laghad sin fís agus meas ag an Rialtas don Ghaeltacht go bhfuil orthu cúigiú Aire Stáit Gaeltachta a roghnú ó tharla toghcháin 2020. Ní hamháin nach bhfuil an Ghaeltacht ina thosaíocht don Aire sinsearach nó don Roinn Turasóireachta, Cultúir, Ealaíon, Gaeltachta, Spóirt agus Meán, ach tá sé anois ina ghnáthrud go mbíonn an Ghaeltacht curtha isteach ag an deireadh anuas ar phríomhchúramaí Aire sóisearach éigin.

“Teastaíonn práinn le cás na Gaeltachta, áit ina bhfuil géarchéim tithíochta ag brú teaghlaigh óna gceantair féin, agus ina bhfuil líon na gcainteoirí laethúil ag titim agus tuismitheoirí ag tógáil clainne i mBéarla don chuid is mó. Teastaíonn maoiniú cothrom do Foras na Gaeilge ionas nach mbeidh iachall ar thograí Gaeilge ciorraithe a dhéanamh, agus teastaíonn maoiniú cothrom freisin ó TG4 agus Údarás na Gaeltachta, atá faoi mhíbhuntáiste i gcomparáid lena gcomhghleacaithe náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta.

“Tá an tAire Patrick O’Donovan ag fáil ardú céime anois tar éis nár éirigh leis an reachtaíocht a fhoilsiú chun toghcháin a thabhairt ar ais do Údarás na Gaeltachta, tar éis nár éirigh leis Scéim Labhairt na Gaeilge a athbhunú mar a gheall sé, agus tar éis gur chur an tAire Tithíochta Darragh O’Brien an milleán air as na treoirlínte pleanála don Ghaeltacht gan a bheith foilsithe.

“Sin gan trácht ar chás na Gaeilge san Oideachas, atá chomh dona sin go bhfuil Conradh na Gaeilge tar éis lorg go gceapfar Aire Stáit ar leith don Ghaeilge san Oideachas chun a chinntiú nach ndéanfar a thuilleadh moilleadóireachta ar fhoilsiú agus cur i bhfeidhm an Polasaí don Oideachas LánGhaeilge atá geallta le fada.

“Tá deis ag an Taoiseach nua a thiomantas a léiriú agus gníomh de réir briathar an rialtais ar na nithe seo go léir. Iarraim air Aire nua Gaeltachta le Gaeilge a roghnú gan mhoill atá tiomanta don athbheochan, agus a thuigeann cás na Gaeltachta. 

“Muna bhfuil an Rialtas reatha ábalta, tá Sinn Féin réidh chun cur chuige dáiríre a thionscnú don teanga, le polasaithe cuimsitheacha agus dírithe réidh le cur i bhfeidhm, agus geallúint go mbeadh an Ghaeltacht mar thosaíocht ag Aire sinsearach.”

The Gaeltacht forgotten again, our language needs a strong Minister without delay – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Gaeilge, Gaeltacht, Arts and Culture, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, has criticised that for the fourth time in four years there is a vacancy for Minister of State for the Gaeltacht, and he called on the new Taoiseach Simon Harris to appoint a new strong Minister without delay to defend and promote the national language.

Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:

“Throughout yesterday’s events, the Gaeltacht and the Irish language were left in the halfpenny place, and not for the first time.

“It is a great pity that this Government has so little vision and respect for the Gaeltacht that they have to appoint a fifth Minister of State for the Gaeltacht since the 2020 election. Not alone is the Gaeltacht not a priority for the senior Minister or the Department for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, but it is now the norm that the Gaeltacht is thrown in at the end on top of a Junior Minister’s primary responsibility.

“Urgency is needed in the case of the Gaeltacht, where a housing crisis is pushing families from their own areas, and where the number of daily speakers is falling and parents are for the most part raising their children through English. Fair funding is needed for Foras na Gaeilge so that Irish language initiatives are not forced to make cuts, and fair funding is also required for TG4 and Údarás na Gaeltachta, who are at a disadvantage compared to national and international peers.

“Minister Patrick O’Donovan is now getting a promotion after failing to publish the legislation needed to bring back elections to Údarás na Gaeltachta, after failing to restore the Irish Speaking Scheme as he promised, and after Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien blamed him for the Gaeltacht planning guidelines not being published.

“That’s without mentioning the case of Irish in Education, which has gotten so bad that Conradh na Gaeilge are after calling for a specific Junior Minister for Irish in Education to be appointed to ensure no further delay to the publication and implementation of the long-promised Policy on Irish Medium Education.

“The new Taoiseach has a chance to demonstrate his commitment and deliver on the Government’s promises on all these things. I call on him to choose a new Gaeltacht Minister with Irish without delay who is committed to the revival, and who understands the case of the Gaeltacht.

“If the current Government is not capable, Sinn Féin is ready to adopt a serious approach to the language, with comprehensive and targeted policies ready to implement, and a promise that the Gaeltacht will be a priority for a senior Minister.”

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