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Enda Kenny: I'm not here to be loved nor liked

Enda Kenny said that the programme for government will not be renegotiated and confirmed a reshuffle is in the offing.

Enda Kenny at a press conference in Dublin today
Enda Kenny at a press conference in Dublin today
Image: Hugh O'Connell/TheJournal.ie

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY has said that the programme for government will not be renegotiated as he made his final appeal to voters ahead of Friday’s local and European elections.

Kenny was speaking at Fine Gael’s pre-election press conference where he said that the party’s candidates, if elected to local councils, would oppose increases in commercial rates and property tax.

He claimed Sinn Féin has not explained who will pay for its policies which include the abolition of the property tax and other revenue raisers.
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“It would wonderful to have easy solutions to complex problems. Unfortunately life and reality are not that way. This government went into this challenge with its eyes wide open,” he said.

“As Taoiseach, I’m neither here to be loved nor liked but to make the decisions as head of government that will sort our country out.”

He insisted that the government’s plan is working, but acknowledged that people around the country are not yet experiencing the recovery committing to use “whatever flexibility we have” to offer relief on income tax in the Budget.

“Our plan is there, our strategy is set out, it’s working, we can see it,” he said.

Kenny also said that the coalition will not be renegotiating the programme for government pointing out that there is a medium-term economic strategy which goes out to 2020 and that the people will have their say in Spring 2016.

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While he confirmed that a Cabinet reshuffle is in the offing, Kenny wouldn’t say whether this will happen before or after the election.

“I’ve a lot of people who want to be ministers and who want to be in different positions. It is constitutionality a matter for the Taoiseach, but this is a coalition government. I get on very well with the Tanaiste, we’ll consider these matters later.”

At the same event, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said that “stability is the absolute foundation of our progress” and urged voters not to opt for smaller or fringe party candidates and “give it all away”:
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Hugh O'Connell

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