28 April 2016
By Elaine Murphy
Anti Austerity Alliance TD Mick Barry today congratulated anti-water charges campaigners for forcing the suspension of water charges but criticised Fianna Fail for agreeing to suspension rather than abolition.
He said: “It was the hundreds of thousands who marched, the three quarters of a million who boycotted and the hundreds of communities that stood up to meter installation that forced the political establishment to suspend the charges. All those campaigners deserve congratulations this week.”
Deputy Barry said the metering programme must now be stopped, arrears must be written off for nonpayers, a refund organised for all those who paid (many of whom did so under duress) and all court charges dropped against water charge campaigners.
However, he criticised Fianna Fail’s decision to back suspension rather than abolition: “Instead of killing off water charges Fianna Fail have decided to keep them alive on life support. Any attempt to revive water charges following the report of the commission will provoke an even greater backlash than the one we have witnessed in the last two years.”