The Yates Anthology: Turning water into a whine
Published 29/08/2015 | 02:30
It's quietly anticipated that 40,000 people will attend today's fifth protest over Irish Water in Dublin. Aspects of Right2Water's campaign are probably disingenuous. The 1EU water directive means revenue charges must be obtained in every member state for public water supplies and sanitary services - whether done through a public utility or local council. Eventually, householders will have to pay. There's clearly a party political campaign element to this organised dissent, especially as trade unions widen agendas to target the Labour Party.
The Government missed the last opportunity for a final U-turn to prevent the general election from being a referendum on Irish Water. It could have used the Eurostat verdict as a game changer to reverse engines. Ministers are now in an electoral quagmire, it is the hottest topic on doorsteps . Some 660,000 householders may have registered, but payments may actually decline as people observe that 54pc of homes aren't paying; in the event of abolition, there won't be refunds. Irish Water hasn't attained a tipping point of certainty, commercial credibility or sustainability.
My best guess is, a year from now, a new State apparatus will replace it as a precondition of formation of the next government.