28th October 2013 Monday
“The tradition of dubbing Ireland’s National public holidays ‘Bank
Holidays’ is nonsensical and should end,”
Sean Kelly MEP said this October holiday weekend.
“The term ‘Bank Holiday’ dates back to a legislative act in the late
1800s which designated four additional closure dates for businesses
and banks in Ireland and the UK. It may have been necessary at that
time but no longer applies in the same way.
“Given recent negative connotations associated with the banking crisis
and the obscene bonus culture which the banking sector cultivated –
the time is right for a change in this area. Ireland’s public holidays
should be called just that,” the South MEP said.
The Fine Gael MEP made today’s statement following his recent call for
the elimination of the large bonuses awarded to board members of
financial institutions, after Dutch bank Rabobank led by example in
this area. The EU recently agreed new rules to cap excessive banker
Mr Kelly says Ireland could also take the initiative of associating
some of these long weekends with themed festivals or celebratory days.
“Perhaps one public holiday weekend could become an official
celebration of Ireland’s sporting life, for example, – just as St
Patrick’s Day celebrates Irish culture and heritage.”