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Garda Bill 2005

6.23.2005

Here is an exerpt from Brendan Howlin's speech last night on the topic of the new garda bill, bearing in mind the fact that the minster saw fit to add in over 100 amendments at the last minute its strange that these quite sensible proposals were dismissed as being reactive in a white heat of anger. STuff and nonsense and only the state wins. "
From Howlin's contribution;
a)“the establishment of a new Garda Authority, to set the priorities for fighting crime at national level, to make the key decisions relating to policing more open and accountable, to be responsible for senior appointments in the Garda Siochanna and to receive and consider reports from the Garda Commissioner on operational decisions.
b)The establishment of county policing liaison committees, to agree a county or city policing plan, with regular meetings between the committee and local Gardai to monitor progress and address the concerns of local communities, and
c)The abolition of the Garda Complaints Board, the role and functioning of which is widely agreed to be unsatisfactory, and its replacement with a Garda Ombudsman to be responsible for investigating complaints against the Garda, such an officer to be provided with his own staff and to be responsible for a new, independent system for ensuring Garda accountability;”

Again these proposals were considered to be reactionary and not neessary. especially when, i suspect, such proposals might make ignoring the will of the people quite dificult. I think all of us appreciate the contribution of both Howlin and Higgins to this issue over the last few years and it strikes me that such is their involvement that they are probably more qualified than Mcdowell to furnish the solution, which incidentally is available here.
McDowell was again caught red handed in trying to subverty our democracy to suit his own designs and will. We do not desire a state where those who guard usand our institutions are insulated from accountability.
It has nearly got so far that a public oversight commission made up of a sample of the electorat must be put in palce and given statutory power to summon and oversee all aspect of our executive and legislature. Now that is a sad condemnation of the state of things.
RR

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