Fine Gael Meath East TD, Regina Doherty, has today (Friday) reminded the Fianna Fáil leader of his record on the spending of public funds. Deputy Doherty said that during his time as Minister for Health, Micheál Martin commissioned 145 reports, at a cost of €30 million, and he stood over his Government’s spending of €50 million of taxpayers’ money on e-voting machines which were never used, and more than €220 million on the failed PPARS system.
“I absolutely believe that Irish Water must fully account for how and where it spent €50 million on consultants who are advising on the establishment of an entirely new water system for this country. However, I find it a little difficult to listen to Micheál Martin lecturing about the use of public money. The Fianna Fáil leader has absolutely no credibility on this issue.
“During his time in the Department of Health, Micheál Martin commissioned 145 reports – many of which were never even used. This cost the taxpayer at least €30 million in consultancy fees. And let us not forget the e-voting machine debacle. Fianna Fáil spent €55 million of taxpayers’ money on e-voting machines, which not only were never used, they actually had to be scrapped last year.
“Under Micheál Martin’s watch the cost of the failed PPARS system ballooned from €9 million to more than €220 million before its rollout had to be halted. How can Micheál Martin think he has any credibility to talk about the spending of taxpayers’ money when he has such an abysmal track record?
“The establishment of Irish Water is a massive undertaking, which will see a single body taking over the work of the 34 local authorities and should result in better value for money for taxpayers in terms of water service delivery. We must get this process right, and I expect Irish Water will give further clarification on its spending to date. Micheál Martin, on the other hand, would do better to reflect on his own record of wasting public funds rather than trying to criticise a situation he knows little about.”