April 2017        

The right to water

Call to action

Jimmy Doran

The CPI calls on all citizens to take part in the final push to defeat water charges by joining in the Right2Water national demonstration in Dublin on the 8th of April.
     It is essential that we have a good turn-out to get water charges abolished once and for all and to force the Government to give the people a referendum to have the public ownership and management of our water enshrined in the constitution.
     The battle is not won yet. Fine Gael are not going to give in without a fight. Their most recent attempt is in the form of a letter to a Fine Gael member of the EU Parliament, Brian Hayes, from a member of the EU Commission, Karmenu Vella, expressing doubts that the proposal to impose fines on those wasting water would comply with EU law. The letter goes on to say that Ireland could not revert to the previous practice, that is, paying for water through general taxation.
     This exposes the undemocratic nature of the European Union and the lack of sovereignty that Ireland has as a member. It drives the Irish establishment up against its EU masters, and exposes the difficulty the people’s demands create for the Government.
     This letter from the EU Commission must not be meekly accepted by the gombeenmen in Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, which is their usual form with all matters relating to the EU.
     First and foremost, this is just the opinion of an unelected EU bureaucrat. It is not a fact, a law, a decree, or anything else: just an opinion. It should be treated with the contempt that it deserves. It must not be used as an excuse for introducing a charge for the “wilful waste of water,” as proposed by Fine Gael.
     We know all too well that if this was allowed to slip in, the “fair usage” level would be whittled away to such a level that it would amount to water charges being introduced through the back door.
     We will not accept either Fine Gael or their masters in the EU undermining the will of the citizens of Ireland. It’s time that the establishment faced up to the reality that they have tried every trick in the book to encourage, to cajole and to bully people into paying water charges, and have failed; so they have wasted well in excess of €1 billion of much-needed taxpayers’ money.
     There will be no compromise. We demand:
• the abolition of domestic water charges
• a constitutional referendum on the public ownership and management of water
• an end to the installing of water meters.

     So let’s all join together on the 8th of April for the final push and show the establishment that we are not about to give up or to walk away with anything less than a victory.
     We will not let them sell off this valuable natural resource to their cronies in big business—because that’s what this has been all about, right from the start.
     See you on the 8th of April. And bring a friend.

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