‘Daniel and friends did more for Inishowen than the Taoiseach’ – Gerry Adams

first_imgSinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has hit out at the government and claimed it lacked reaction and support for the Inishowen flood victims. His remarks have sparked outrage with Donegal’s Government Minister Joe McHugh.Mr Adams today said community volunteers and local authorities who reacted to the flash flooding disaster in Donegal last month went beyond the government’s efforts.The Sinn Féin president claimed the ‘Flood Aid’ fundraising concert held in Letterkenny on September 3rd did more to help the people of Inishowen than Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Speaking at the Sinn Féin ‘Think In’ 2017 in Dublin today, Mr Adams said: “The government has not matched the efforts of neighbours, of communities, of council workers, first responders.“Daniel O’Donnell and his country and western friends have done more for the beleaguered people of Inishowen than the Taoiseach.”Mr Adams also criticised the government’s flooding prevention measures and commitments to address climate change.“The government is in default on its international commitment to cut emissions that contribute to global warming. “The government has still not produced the Flood Risk Management Plans that are required under the EU Floods Directive which came into force in 2010.“Nor has it put in place insurance cover for families, businesses and farmers faced with the ever present threat of flooding,” he said.An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister Joe McHugh, Regina Doherty with playgroup leader Sarah Quigley-Burns when they visited flood damaged areas of North Donegal. (North West Newspix)Government Minister Joe McHugh has responded to Mr Adams’ remarks, saying they are “insulting and simply wrong”.The Donegal Fine Gael TD asked “Where was Deputy Adams as people were forced from their homes by the storm?”“He showed up in Donegal four days ago. In those first few days people were traumatised and seeking help and support and Deputy Adams was nowhere to be seen. His Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald showed up a week after the floods. “Government ministers were on the ground in the hours after the floods, talking to victims and helping them get supports. Emergency funding for affected families was fast-tracked immediately and a number of other schemes put in place, including funding to repair homes and a €2m fund for voluntary organisations and businesses.“Mr Adams has insulted all of those who were actually out working to help those affected – the incredible council staff who have worked around the clock to open roads.“He is also attacking our Defence Forces who have built bridges, erected safety fences and helped to clear out homes.“Department of Social Protection staff from Donegal and Sligo worked through the night in some cases to ensure that all those affected got the help they needed and HSE counsellors have done the same. “Three Government ministers including myself were at the scene within hours of the flood and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was also in Inishowen that week along with five other Government ministers. All branches of Government responded speedily to the crisis which unfolded.”An Tasoiseach Leo Varadkar with Minister Joe McHugh and Minister Regina Doherty and officials from Donegal County Council when he visited the flood damaged areas in North Donegal. (North West Newspix)Minister McHugh called on Adams to apologise to the many responders who helped in the wake of the devastating floods. McHugh said Adams is “wide off the mark” in his view of the joint efforts of authorities and communities.“After Donegal County Council assessed the damage, there was an inter-department Government meeting to ensure a speedy response to the crisis.“I also attended a follow up inter-department meeting in Dublin co-ordinated by Sean Hogan – National Director of the National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management.“The response of civic society to the crisis has been incredible and I want to acknowledge the input from musicians, GAA clubs, the Red Cross, the Donegal Diaspora and the neighbours who went out of their way to help. Any time there is a crisis in Donegal, Daniel O’Donnell is always at the forefront.“Mr Adams on the other hand was nowhere to be seen,” Minister McHugh said.‘Daniel and friends did more for Inishowen than the Taoiseach’ – Gerry Adams was last modified: September 6th, 2017 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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