Saturday 7 December 2019

Fine Gael politician insists her water comments 'were open to misinterpretation'

Cork city councillor Laura McGonigle.
Cork city councillor Laura McGonigle. Newsdesk Newsdesk

A Fine Gael councillor has issued a clarification after she sparked controversy by saying that water charges protesters should collect rainwater while out marching and drink it for a week.

Cork city councillor Laura McGonigle made the controversial comment to followers of her Facebook page at the weekend.

She made the comments as 150,000 people around the country marched to protest against Irish Water and the introduction of water charges.

The councillors comments were deleted from her Facebook page but several screenshots have been posted on social media.


The councillor issued a statement today on Twitter saying her comments were “open to misinterpretation”.

“I wish to clarify a comment posted by me on my private Facebook account over the weekend.”

“A suggestion had been made to me earlier that morning that as a nation we should not pay for our water as there was plenty of rain.”

“I was attempting to highlight that rainwater is not safe for drinking and costs the State in the region of €1.2bn per year to treat,” Ms McGonigle said in her statement.

“I realise that my comments were open to a misinterpretation that I did not intend, I apologise for an offence this may have caused.”

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