Wednesday 20 March 2019

18 more gardai to be assigned to streets

Local Fine Gael TD Fergus O’Dowd has welcomed news received from his colleague the Minister for Justice, Charlie Flanagan TD, that 18 newly qualified Gardai will be assigned to Drogheda and District for the Christmas period, with further additional resources from adjoining divisions on a temporary basis.

According to Deputy O’Dowd, this will allow the local Gardai to saturate patrols in local estates and the town centre.

“I will continue to press both the Minister for Justice and the Garda Commisioner to provide these additional positions to Drogheda and District on a permanent basis.

“The fact remains that Drogheda has over 50 fewer permanent Gardai than Dundalk even though Drogheda is now the largest town in Ireland.

“I want to again commend the local Gardai for their exemplary action and bravery over recent weeks,” he concluded.

Sinn Féin TD for Louth Imelda Munster says that temporary additional resources are not the solution to the escalating gangland feud in Drogheda.

“I have been calling for additional resources for the Drogheda area for some time now, long before the escalation of the ongoing feud in the town.”

“Any additional resources are to be welcomed, and I am glad to see Garda management taking action on this matter. It is long overdue and badly needed.”

“Gardaí locally have been starved of resources, and the only solution to this is the deployment of additional permanent Gardaí. Had the force been sufficiently resourced all along it is likely that the current crisis would have been averted.”

Senator Ged Nash has said that the additional Gardai temporarily deployed to Drogheda must be permanent.

“This is a welcome development. I have been calling for more Gardai for Drogheda for some time now - well before the recent escalation in violence in the town.

“Objectively, Drogheda is under-resourced compared even to towns that are much smaller in size and scale.

“It is not good enough that the government and the Commissioner sees fit to police Drogheda as if it were a small provincial town. Cllr Pio Smith said the extra gardai were badly needed.

‘In my opinion, this will greatly enhance the ability of the community policing unit to establish an ongoing presence in the parts of our town that currently suffer from anti social behaviour.

‘Chief Superintendent Christy Mangan and Superintendent Andy Watters have done significant work in establishing a dedicated drugs unit in Drogheda and revitalising the community policing unit and this work will pay dividends in the months to come.'

Drogheda Independent