Water committee report a “substantial victory for people power” say Right2Water, but campaign will go on

“Irish Water should now be abolished, wasteful metering programme should be ended, a referendum must be held and all charges against water protesters should be dropped,” say campaign

Right2Water, the umbrella campaign for the water charges protest movement, today welcomed the now inevitable ending of domestic water charges, the blanket metering programme and the consensus that there must be a referendum on protecting the ownership and management of the public water system in the Constitution.

However, Right2Water committed to continuing to keep pressure on efforts by Fine Gael and Fianna Fail to keep the privatisation agenda alive with expensive and unnecessary metering programmes continuing in some instances. 

Right2Water spokesperson Brendan Ogle stated: ‘Fianna Fail, having put domestic water charges on the political agenda in 2009, will not now be allowed to steal the credit for killing Phil Hogan and Alan Kelly’s ridiculous water scams from the hundreds of thousands of people who changed this country forever by their strength, persistent protests and unity.

He added, “In 2014 Irish people said enough is enough, and they haven’t stopped saying it since.

Those citizens will continue to make sure that our Right2Water, and many other rights, are not turned into commodities for profit and greed at the expense of future generations.

Community activist and mother Fiona Nichols from Wicklow said, “this is our win, it is a win for a peoples’ movement all over Ireland, but while it is a massive win it is also a partial win.

She added, “We want all single meters gone. These meters save nothing, suck up money needed to fix leaks and ultimately they become the hardware of water privatisation

Ms Nichols said “Simon Coveney should have allowed this Committee to disband Irish Water. We need a National Public Water Board, not a bloated quango like Irish Water which is toxic and needs to be buried.”

Mr. Ogle urged protestors to celebrate the success achieved to date in Dublin on Saturday, 8th April 2017 at 2 pm, when Right2Water will hold their 9th national day of protest. He said thousands will be descending on the city to demand a date for the Water Referendum.

Mr Ogle concluded, “The Taoiseach recently called a referendum to extend a democratic franchise to those in the diaspora. With water now the most profitable non-financial commodity on the planet, it is essential our water remains in public ownership. Can the Taoiseach act to enhance our democracy and prove Fine Gael have no water privatisation agenda by announcing a date to put our human Right2Water to the people in a referendum?

“We have come so far, and after years of austerity there is reason to celebrate this substantial victory. But there is more work to do also. Join us in Dublin on Saturday to continue that work and continue to enhance and deliver your human Right2Water.