• The tragic death of Savita Halappanavar has reignited the dreaded abortion debate. As of yet, no one knows whether this unfortunate death could have been avoided. It is undoubtedly the most sensitive and difficult debate any legislature has to face, and it is necessary that restraint, respect and understanding should prevail.
It is important that our politicians do not allow it to develop into an abortion-on-demand issue, rather than the health issue that it is, as in this recent case.
It is an issue that has not been addressed with any degree of clarity up to now despite the fact that it is 20 years since the X Case. This is the seventh government that has been in place since then, and all of the present parties in the Dail apart from Sinn Fein and the Socialist Party have been in power in some shape or form in that time.
As it is a matter of life and death, it is a subject that should not involve cheap political point-scoring. In that respect, it is surely not too much to ask our elected TDs to come together in the interest of humanity and agree on the way forward.
It is unreasonable for Fianna Fail, in particular, to be overly vocal on the issue, as if they have all the answers, as it was they who were the predominant party of governance during that 20-year period and did nothing about it. It was not an issue for them, up to this – but of course, as usual, it is of major importance for them now.