“Mallow handed over its water asset free of charge!”

This week it was revealed that Irish Water, the new company set up by the government to run the water services of the country, has spent 50 million euro on consultant fees. This has led to the CEO of the company John Tierney appearing before a Dail committee this week. Speaking on the issue, Cllr Melissa Mullane, Sinn Fein candidate in the upcoming local election in the Mallow/Kanturk area said; “How is it possible now, after all the waste we have witnessed, that a new government-created quango can spend this amount of taxpayers’ money without any oversight. This is just at the start-up phase and my fear is that the existing ‘ad hoc’ spending will become the status quo within this organisation. €50m on private consultants is outrageous in any organisation but yet seems the norm and quite acceptable when it’s the public purse. Regardless of being brought in front of the Committee on the Environment on Tuesday, 14th January 2014, the horse has now bolted and the money is spent.”

She added, “Mallow has given close to €500,000 to Irish Water this year and also has in reality handed over the keys to our water assets. It is inevitable in my opinion that Irish Water is being set up to be privatised, yet Mallow has handed over an extremely lucrative asset to Irish Water free of charge. Mallow or Cork county will never be reimbursed for this asset, yet the public will be charged a hefty price for a basic necessity. It is an unjust charge which Sinn Féin have never moved their stance on. Fianna Fáil now complaining is too little, too late. Fianna Fáil have always supported a tax on our water. If they were in government it would be no different. Historically, Fianna Fail have supported and invented the quango mentality. This abdication of responsibility leads to situations like we have here where there is disgraceful wastage of much needed public funding,” she said.