More than three-quarters of Fianna Fáil’s frontbench have failed to produce a single detailed policy paper for the areas they are responsible for, a Fine Gael TD has revealed.
Deputy Colm Brophy, a Dublin South West TD, today said the dearth of detailed policies and plans from the opposition party TDs exposes the vacuum of new ideas or thought at the heart of Fianna Fáil.
“Fianna Fáil say they want to be in Government; so where is their plan for the country? The public deserve to know how Fianna Fáil would tackle some of the biggest issues facing society. But my analysis exposes Fianna Fáil as being bereft of solutions. Just five of Fianna Fáil’s 22 frontbench spokespeople have offered up proposals since the minority Government came together in mid-2016,” Deputy Brophy said.
“A review of proposals provided by Micheál Martin’s frontbench despite several reshuffles in the last 40 months, offers little to study. Two line bills or press releases are not detailed thought out plans that may benefit different sectors of the country.”
The review found Fianna Fáil has no policies for some of the biggest issues facing our country such as:
- Fianna Fáil’s housing policy has been promised since early 2018 but has also yet to materialise
- Mental Health
- Broadband – the ‘plan’ on their website has no plans at all
- Their long promised white paper on Northern Ireland has yet to materialise
- Rural Ireland
- The Economy
- The Arts
- Dara Calleary, Deputy leader and appointed director of policy development in March 2018 has not published a single policy document during his tenure
Deputy Brophy said Fianna Fáil offers scant original thought when it comes to challenges facing the country.
“For instance, Micheál Martin has already said he will not sign off on the National Broadband Plan. What do Fianna Fáil offer as an alternative?
“‘Roll out high speed, quality broadband across the state’ is all their website states. No details, no substance, no costings, no timeframe. How can the public be expected to trust Fianna Fáil to deliver?
“These revelations highlight the reckless and cynical trend within Fianna Fáil to con the Irish public.
“The reality is Fianna Fáil has spent the last three years hoping people will forget their past and won’t notice their lack of plans for the future. They do not have a strong team or viable plan for the country.
“Having no policies is dangerous. They’re making it up as they go along. At a time when we need a steady course, they want to put the country back on a rollercoaster with no safety harness.
“Fianna Fáil will claim they have published detailed policy documents on a range of government responsibilities, that is simply not true.
“In 2017, Micheál Martin told his party Think In that ‘in every area members of the front bench will present policy papers setting out our proposals’ – another false promise.
“Even the papers that Fianna Fáil have produced are in niche areas. They operate instead on the basis of policy by press release.
“What would Fianna Fáil do or not do about the greatest challenges facing our country? We don’t know and neither do they,” Deputy Brophy said.