Sinn Féin’s Leader in the Seanad Niall Ó Donnghaile has called on government parties not to block a proposal at today’s ‘Dáil Reform Committee’ which would allow MLAs from the North to sit on Special Oireachtas Committees.
Speaking after today’s Order of Business in the Seanad, Senator Ó Donnghaile said:
“A Shared Island must mean a Shared Oireachtas.
“I would call on government members not to fly in the face of the Good Friday Agreement, not to run contrary to Article 2 of Bunreacht na hÉireann by voting against the proposal to allow an MLA or MP from all parties in the North to sit on Special Oireachtas Committees.
“These Special Committees work on important issues which affect people across the island, such as on improving autism services. Including MLAs and MPs would only enhance the work of these committees and ensure better partnership and dialogue to bring forward important solutions to improve the lives of people across this island.
“These Committees don’t vote on legislation, but research, engage and report on a range of issues which have important and deep resonance across Irish life. Our experience of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement is improved because MPs from the North are members. Why take a different approach to Special Committees?
“Citizens in the North should not be left behind, Ireland works best when we work together – our Special Committees in the Oireachtas should reflect that.”