April 17, 2024
Gach geallúint don Ghaeltacht briste, teastaíonn rialtas nua – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Cháin urlabhraí Gaeilge, Gaeltachta, Ealaíon agus Cultúir Shinn Féin, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, “Lá an Úitsigh” do Údarás na Gaeltachta, agus cinnteidil nua foilsithe seachas an Bille a bhí geallta maidir le toghcháin, toghcháin nach dtarlóidh anois i mí Meitheamh in éineacht leis na toghcháin áitiúil agus Eorpach.

Tharraing urlabhraí Shinn Féin aird freisin ar an bhforáil nua atá curtha isteach i gcinnteidil nua an bhille, nach mbaineann leis an Údarás fiú, ach a thugann le fios nach mbeidh caighdeáin teanga don státsheirbhís i bhfeidhm de réir an amchlár a bhí aontaithe in Acht na dTeangacha Oifigiúla (Leasú) 2021, agus an Rialtas anois ag triáil éalú ón dualgas reachtúil maidir le soláthar seirbhísí i nGaeilge.

Dúirt an Teachta Ó Snodaigh:

“An chéad cinneadh glactha ag an Taoiseach nua Simon Harris i leith na Gaeltachta ná freagracht aisti a scaoileadh ó Fhine Gael.

“An chéad cinneadh glactha ag an Aire Stáit nua Gaeltachta Thomas Byrne ná toghcháin Údarás na Gaeltachta a chur siar agus maolú a lorg maidir le teacht i bhfeidhm na gcaighdeán teanga sa státsheirbhís.

“Gheall an tAire Catherine Martin go bhfoilseofar Bille Údarás na Gaeltachta ag tús Aibreán, agus gheall an tAire Darragh O’Brien go bhfoilseofar treoirlínte pleanála Gaeltachta roimh an Cháisc.

“Foilsíodh cinnteidil do Bhille Údarás na Gaeltachta ag tús 2023, agus thug an Coiste Oireachtais faoi grinnscrúdú réamhreachtaíochta, ag ullmhú tuarascáil cuimsitheach le moltaí faoi Bord iomlán tofa le hionadaíocht do gach ceantar Gaeltachta, na ceantair beaga agus oileánda san áireamh.

“Anois in áit dréachtbhille, níl ach cinnteidil foilsithe athuair agus gan aird ar bith do na moltaí is tábhachtaí nó réiteach ar bith don chothromaíocht inscne fiú, a bhí luaite mar chúis leis an moill.

“Cad a bhí á dhéanamh acu le naoi mí anuas?

“Níl Bille réidh chun toghcháin a thabhairt ar ais don Údarás.

“Ní tharlóidh toghcháin don Údarás leis na toghcháin áitiúil i mí Meitheamh.

“Ní thiocfaidh na Caighdeáin Teanga don státsheirbhís i bhfeidhm de réir an amchlár aontaithe.

“Níl forálacha eile de Acht na dTeangacha Oifigiúla maidir le cearta ó thaobh síntí fada in ainm an duine tagtha i bhfeidhm ach oiread, tar éis gur tugadh Mí Deireadh Fómhair 2023 mar spriocdháta.

“Níl na treoirlínte pleanála Gaeltachta foilsithe don tríú Cháisc i ndiaidh a chéile.

“Níl dúbailt ar an nGaeloideachas mar sprioc a thuilleadh mar a bhí geallta sa Chlár Rialtais, rud eile a tháinig chun solais ar maidin i bhfreagra ón Aire Norma Foley ar cheist parlaiminte uaim, áit nár aithin sí fiú go raibh sé mar sprioc sa Chlár Rialtais, gan tagairt a dhéanamh anois ach do ‘méadú’.

“Tá an Rialtas ag siúl siar ó na geallúintí go léir a rinne siad faoin nGaeltacht agus faoin nGaeilge.

“Teastaíonn olltoghchán agus rialtas nua chun dul i ngleic leis an ngéarchéim teanga.

“Tá Sinn Féin tiomanta don teanga, agus polasaithe cuimsitheacha foilsithe againn chun tabhairt faoi na riachtanais go léir seo.

“Tá sé in am don athrú.”

With every promise to the Gaeltacht broken, a new government is needed – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Gaeilge, Gaeltacht, Arts and Culture, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, has criticised what he calls “Groundhog Day” for Údarás na Gaeltachta, now heads of bill have again been published for elections, which now won’t take place in June alongside local and European elections.

The Sinn Féin spokesperson also highlighted a new provision being inserted into the new heads of bill, which has no link to Údarás, but which makes clear that the Language Standards for the public service will not be in place in accordance with the timeline agreed in the Official Languages (Amendment) Act 2021, with the Government now trying to get out of its legal obligations in relation to the provision of services in Irish.

Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:

“The first decision of the new Taoiseach Simon Harris to do with the Gaeltacht was to remove the responsibility from Fine Gael.

“The first decision taken by the new Minister of State for the Gaeltacht Thomas Byrne has been to push back Údarás na Gaeltachta elections and seek a delay in terms of implementing the language standards for the public service.

“Minister Catherine Martin promised to publish the Údarás na Gaeltachta Bill at the start of April, and Minister Darragh O’Brien promised to publish Gaeltacht planning guidelines before Easter.

“Heads of bill for the Údarás na Gaeltachta Bill were published at the start of 2023, and the Oireachtas Committee undertook prelegislative scrutiny, preparing a comprehensive report with recommendations for an entirely electd Board with representation for every Gaeltacht area, small areas and islands included.

“Now, instead of publishing a draft Bill, heads of bill are being published yet again, with no heed given to the most important recommendations and no solution at all for gender equality, which was given as the reason for the delay.

“What have they been doing for nine months?

“No Bill is ready to bring elections back to Údarás na Gaeltachta.

“Údarás elections will not happen alongside the local elections in June.

“Language standards for the public service will not come into effect in line with the agreed timeline.

“Other provisions of the Official Languages Act relating to rights for people whose names have a síneadh fada have also not come into effect, after October 2023 was given as a deadline.

“Gaeltacht planning guidelines have not been published for the third Easter in a row.

“The doubling of Irish Medium Education, as set out in the Programme for Government, is no longer a goal, something else which became apparent this morning in an answer from Minister Norma Foley to a parliamentary question from me, where she did not even acknowledge that it was a Programme for Government commitment, and only making reference now to an ‘increase’.

“This Government is rolling back on every promise it has made on the Gaeltacht and An Ghaeilge.

“We need a general election and a new government to address the language crisis.

“Sinn Féin is committed to our language, and has published comprehensive policies to tackle all of these needs.

“It is time for change.”

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