Cowen is accused of rewriting history
Fine Gael and the Labour Party have rounded on former Taoiseach Brian Cowen's attempts to "rewrite" the history of the economic crash and subsequent recovery.
The ex-Fianna Fáil leader has claimed his government "contributed to the future economic growth and jobs by taking the right decisions" at the height of the recession.
While being conferred with an honorary doctorate by the National University of Ireland, Mr Cowen made a 50-minute speech in which he said the Fianna Fáil/Green Party coalition "introduced a comprehensive set of policies that laid the foundations for growth returning by 2011 and the exceptional jobs growth we have seen in the last number of years".
"These policies have continued as a centrepiece of the current Government's policies," he said.
The comments have been met with derision, with Fine Gael TD Peter Burke saying: "The brass neck of Fianna Fáil continues to amaze. Brian Cowen's comments this week echo similar interventions by Micheál Martin in recent years.
"While there is no need to rake over the coals of who is to blame for the economic crash, Fianna Fáil really fan the flames when they try to take credit for the recovery that followed."
Labour's Ged Nash, who was a 'super junior minister' in the last government, said: "Nobody buys this arrant nonsense. Their hard necks know no bounds and their effort to rewrite history will be seen for what it is - cynical and opportunistic.
"In other words, classic Fianna Fáil."
Mr Nash said families should be thankful that the Fine Gael/Labour coalition "didn't follow Fianna Fáil's prescription for economic recovery".