Greens quit Irish Government

Ireland's Green Party has quit the country's coalition group as the party prepares for an election in March.


Leader of the junior coalition members, John Gormley, said the Greens had lost patience and could no longer work alongside the ruling Fianna Fail party.

At a press conference yesterday (January 24) at the Merrion Hotel, Dublin Mr Gormley said the ‘the Irish people expect and deserve better’.

The Greens relationship with the Fianna Fail has been on a knife edge since November last year, when its leadership called for an election following the IMF bailout.

In November the Greens called for four key targets, which needed to be addressed before an election could take place.

These were: concluding financial arrangements with the EU/IMF; producing a four-year economic plan; passing Budget 2011; and passing the Finance Bill to give effect to that Budget.

Mr Gormley said three of these four objectives have been completed. He said: “We believe it is possible to complete the Finance Bill quickly before going to a general election.

“We believe that this election is absolutely necessary. The Irish people have begun to lose confidence in politics and in the political process. They have watched aghast the conduct in Dáil Éireann of political parties.

“For a very long time we in the Green Party have stood back in the hope that Fianna Fáil could resolve persistent doubts about their party leadership.

“A definitive resolution of this has not yet been possible. And our patience has reached an end.

“Because of these continuing doubts, the lack of communication and the breakdown in trust, we have decided that we can no longer continue in government.

“We will remain true to our promise to support the Finance Bill from the Opposition benches, with the promised cooperation of the opposition parties.”

The environment portfolio has been handed to Éamon Ó Cuív and control of for communications, energy and natural resources has been taken over by Pat Carey.

Luke Walsh

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