April 30, 2024
Government needs to get a grip of themselves and outline what ‘agreement’ is actually in place with British Government – Pa Daly TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Pa Daly TD, has said that the government need to get a grip of themselves, and must outline what ‘agreement’ is actually in place with the British government to return migrants to Britain.

Deputy Daly was speaking after the Taoiseach today, incredibly, sought to deny that the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice had contradicted each other this week.

The Kerry TD added that the government failed to demonstrate the calm and competent response required, and instead met the issue with panic, contradiction and a gift to the Tories.

Teachta Daly said:

“Minister Helen McEntee came to the Justice Committee last week and claimed that 80 percent of those applying for asylum in this state are coming from Britain via the North.

“The Tánaiste, for reasons best known to himself, then recklessly jumped in with two feet, claiming that Britain’s Rwanda deal had led to an increase in people crossing across the border, despite no evidence to that effect.

“This was a gift to a Tory Party on the back foot during an election, and keen to highlight conflict with Ireland and the European Union.

“The back-and-forth that followed in the media between Tánaiste Micheál Martin and Minister McEntee about whether there was any evidence or statistics underpinning her claim underlined the chaos of this government.

“With two ministers contradicting each other in public, the government failed to demonstrate the calm and competent response required, and instead brought panic and contradiction.

“Incredibly, the Taoiseach today attempted, with a straight face, to claim that the Tánaiste and Minister McEntee had not contradicted each other. That simply is not credible.

“Simon Harris and his government need to get a grip of themselves.

“The British government says it has no legal obligation to accept returns from Ireland.

“The Taoiseach says that they have an agreement with the British government, yet the British government is talking about an administrative arrangement.

“What is the truth?

“If there is an agreement, what is it, when was it agreed, what were the terms of it, and where can it be examined?

“We know from the British Home Office that Britain has returned at least one person, if not several people, to Ireland since Brexit.

“Has the government here attempted returns to Britain in the same period since Brexit? If not, why?

“The government needs to introduce robust legislation that will be strong and withstand future court challenges. We will examine such legislation carefully, but we want to see this loophole resolved, and resolved quickly.

“People want a system that is decent and fair, but they also expect rules to be enforced.

“So what we need to know now is whether there truly is any agreement of substance that the British government can be held to, and what it contains.”

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