Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy has said she intends to bring forward legislation which would give the Comptroller and Auditor General scrutiny and audit powers over Irish Water. Deputy Murphy had tabled an amendment to the Water Services Bill which is going through the Dáil this week but last night both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil voted against her amendment which sought to allow the C&AG to monitor, examine, and audit the use of the public funds being pumped into Irish Water.
Speaking following the vote Ms Murphy said:
“We know that the entire Irish Water fiasco has been a disaster from the outset and we are now in a situation where millions of public funds are being pumped into this entity and yet there is no remit for the C&AG to scrutinise, in the public interest, the use of the public monies. In 2017 alone, it is estimated that €753 million of public funds will be put into Irish Water and yet there will be no scrutiny by anyone whose sole purpose it is to ensure those public funds are being used appropriately.”
“The C&AG has a very clear remit to monitor and audit the use of public funds with resulting public reports and disclosures to the Public Accounts Committee for example. This gives citizens the opportunity to see how public funds are being used. I am extremely disappointed that both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil refused to support my amendment last night, choosing instead to push it out to an indeterminate date in the future. What will be the point in wringing our hands after a revelation of yet more millions spent on consultants for example? This is something that could have been avoided had the Minister accepted the amendment last night.”
8th November 2017