Tuesday 27 September 2016

Politicians need to stop the chaos and give us stability

Published 23/04/2016 | 02:30

'The gates of our prisons have not been unlatched – but there is a gradual march of lawyers towards our courts to get inmates out'
'The gates of our prisons have not been unlatched – but there is a gradual march of lawyers towards our courts to get inmates out'

The gates of our prisons have not been unlatched - but there is a gradual march of lawyers towards our courts to get inmates out.

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Criminals whose rap sheets include theft, domestic violence, firearms, drugs, fraud and road traffic offences have already argued, in some cases successfully, to be allowed free on foot of a High Court ruling earlier this week.

But the laws governing the operation suspended sentences got about 90 seconds of air time in Dáil on Wednesday when acting Taoiseach Enda Kenny effectively told us: 'Nothing to see here, we'll get it sorted'.

The following day, eight hours' worth of Dáil time was set aside to debate Britain's relationship with the EU - a hugely important topic on which almost all TDs agree.

In summary, the view was 'a Brexit would be bad for Ireland'.

But a vacuum can be hard to fill and shortly after lunchtime the politicians ran out of things to say. They bolted for their constituencies.

Some new TDs even privately lamented the fact their maiden speeches in Dáil were not on a more exciting subject. Their efforts are unlikely to get much coverage in the local paper.

Brexit might happen and we need to be ready, but what about the scandal that is already happening.

Why was their little or no outrage within the Leinster House bubble about Mr Justice Michael Moriarty's ruling that the application of suspended sentences is occurring in an unconstitutional way?

A proper political system would be up in arms at the fact dangerous criminals are not being held to account and not paying their debt to society.

The Department of Justice and Attorney General said they could have emergency legislation "within days".

Days have passed and we have no update.

Judges say they don't know what to do.

It's time for the politicians to give us stability over chaos.

Irish Independent

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