TRANSPORT MINISTER PASCHAL Donohoe is in a 15 person battle for three seats in Dublin Central, but this morning he faced a battle of a different sort.
On a beautiful spring morning across from the GPO, Donohoe climbed on board a Dublin Bus decked out to look like a 1916-era tram.
Followed by a cramped group of journalists and photographers, the minister was greeted by the sound of gunfire and explosions. All for dramatic effect of course.
It’s part of Dublin Bus’ 1916 Beyond the Barricades tour which takes you back to the Rising on a 90 minute tour of the rebellion’s locations. Telling stories about the rebels along the way.
It’s complete with some in your face screaming (literally), which today was ably provided by Aisling O’Mara and Robbie O’Connor.
The minister got a front row seat to one such monologue from O’Connor.
Asked what he thought about the show put on for him, Donohoe said it was a “fantastic experience” and particularly good that Dublin’s main public transport provider is involved the commemorations.
But if the minister thought it was going to be a break from the rigours of election campaigning he was wrong.
Asked about Enda Kenny’s comments about ‘whingers’, Donohoe says that the matter is over and that Fine Gael will be campaigning on the issues.
The Taoiseach clarified promptly that he was referring to particular matters that has been raised in his own constituency and he’s made that clear across last night and today. Our party will be continuing to campaign now on what we believe is best for the country.
On the on ongoing Luas dispute, which will see further strikes on 8 March and St. Patrick’s Day, he said that it’s not for him to get involved.
The government has in place the Workplace Relations Commission and the Labour Court that is organised and supported by the government to deal with workplace relations matters.
The minister added that on ongoing strike would ‘wreck the Luas’ if it continued and said that the expectations of all sides in negotiations must be ‘realistic’.
I want to reiterate again that it is imperative that negotiations in relation to the approaching Luas strikes actually take place, but they have to take place on realistic basis. Everyone has to have realistic expectations and demands as they go into the negotiation.
You can book tickets for the tour at dublinsightseeing.ie