Sinn Féin would scrap Irish Water if they get into government, says Adams

Sunday 14 February 2016 22.33
Gerry Adams said his party would not be able to pay back those who have already paid their water bills
Gerry Adams said his party would not be able to pay back those who have already paid their water bills

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has said he would scrap Irish Water and redeploy or get rid of staff at the utility if the party gets into power.

He said that this would be done on an individual basis and at whatever was the least cost to the taxpayer.

However, he did not know how much resources would be left from stopping the metering programme, which Sinn Féin has pledged to use in other ways.

Speaking on RTÉ's This Week, Mr Adams said Sinn Féin would seek to change the law so that they would not have to honour the metering contract with Siteserv, and they would be guided by the best legal advice on this.

In addition, Mr Adams said his party would not be able to pay back those who have already paid their water bills.

With regard to Sinn Féin's policy on wages, Mr Adams said he does not know if his party’s plans to give low-paid public sector workers a living wage will have a knock-on effect for higher paid public servants.

Mr Adams also said these workers would not lose their entitlements from the Department of Social Protection.

He also described the warnings made by Danny McCoy of IBEC regarding Sinn Féin’s economic plans as "very prejudiced and unfair comments".

He said it would take at least two terms for Sinn Féin to deliver universal GP care.

He added that people should be no more concerned about a former IRA man being appointed to the Department of Justice under a Sinn Féin governement than they would be about De Valera or Lemass being appointed.

He denied he had divided loyalties, saying his loyalty has always been to the Irish people.