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Questions raised over how many of 111 Garda stations without internet have been connected since July

But Fianna Fáil TD Jim O’Callaghan has questioned whether the figures can be trusted, and that he would make a complaint.

JUSTICE MINISTER CHARLIE Flanagan has said that in three months, a sixth of the total number of Garda stations without internet were connected.

But a Fianna Fáil has questioned the accuracy of those figures, and said that he will make a formal complaint to the Ceann Comhairle about the figures provided by the Minister.

In response to a PQ from Jim O’Callaghan, Flanagan said that of 111 Garda stations that are without internet access or access to the internal Garda system Pulse, 21 had been connected in the past three months. That leaves a total of 90 stations without access to internet.

A further 15 were in the process of being connected, he said. 

But the Justice Minister said that there were 76 stations remaining to be connected, which doesn’t add up.

O’Callaghan said that this indicated that the government is “lost in a black hole” when it comes to what Garda stations are and aren’t connected.

The figures do not add up and I would be somewhat concerned about the accuracy of the Department’s data if I have been cited three entirely different figures in relation to one single query.

“I will be making a formal complaint to the Ceann Comhairle in this regard,” he said.

The Justice Minister said that he has been advised by the Gardaí that “for operational reasons”, a list of the stations that aren’t connected cannot be provided.

He did give a breakdown of where those 76 non-networked stations were located, however:

  • Eastern Region: 9
  • Northern Region: 6
  • South Eastern Region: 23
  • Southern Region: 18
  • Western Region: 20

O’Callaghan said that the lack of access to the internet was “totally unacceptable” and made it impossible for gardaí to perform their duties effectively.

“The failure to connect Garda stations to the internet is a serious failure of government,” he said.

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