Fine Gael Senator and spokesman on European Affairs, Neale Richmond has said the Fianna Fáil (FF) leader would be better informing the country about his party’s proposal for the North rather than passing condescending remarks on Oireachtas colleagues.
Senator Richmond was speaking as Micheál Martin last night (Thusday), in a speech, told how a “junior Senator was sent out to attack” his party after he and FF colleagues repeatedly failed to explain, or even outline, their proposal for a special economic zone for the North as Brexit draws nearer.
“Micheál Martin is clearly more interested in petty attacks on Oireachtas colleagues rather than spelling out his magical economic zone for the North,” Senator Richmond said.
“This is baffling condescension from a former Minister who obviously learned few diplomacy skills from his time in the Department of Foreign Affairs. I wonder how Micheál’s younger senator’s like him using such a dismissive term? It doesn’t say much for the regard he holds Catherine Ardagh, Lorraine Clifford Lee or Jennifer Murnane O’Connor in.
“On Monday, Deputy Martin himself said he needed to put flesh on the bone of his proposal, despite it being in the ether for an age. I asked him for more detail and he gives out that a junior Senator had the cheek to ask him. This raises serious questions about the Deputy’s temperament and if his great plan is anything more than a soundbite.
“Perhaps Micheál Martin would best concentrate his efforts on putting flesh on the bones of his proposed economic zone. We have no indication of what it would entail or how it would work as Brexit comes closer.
“It is plain for all to see FF are clearly pretty confused when it comes to Brexit. A Kerry Fianna Fáil councillor said this week that we need to consider an Irexit. Another FF councillor has called for border controls. Micheál Martin himself wanted bi-lateral negotiations between Ireland and the UK regarding Brexit.
“What does all this tell us? Fianna Fáil have no coherent strategy, no plan for the country. They are unable to grasp the concept of Brexit and the best way for this country to proceed. Thankfully, for all else, the Government does,” Senator Richmond said.