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Dublin: 10 °C Thursday 2 April, 2020

'You're letting down the people of Kerry': TDs get in shouting match over new rural bus service

Danny Healy-Rae got into a shouting match with Minister Brendan Griffin this evening.


A SHOUTING MATCH between two Kerry TDs broke out in the Dáil over the new rural transport scheme this evening.

The row erupted between Independent TD Danny Healy-Rae and the Junior Minister of Transport Brendan Griffin when the minister was accused of “letting down the people of Kerry”.

Healy-Rae said it is ridiculous to say that eight routes in Kerry are going to meet the needs of the people who are rurally isolated.

Transport Minister Shane Ross announced that 50 new bus routes will combat rural isolation.

The local link bus scheme, which will start in June, is going to run from 6pm to 11pm in a pilot project across 50 routes in 19 counties.

Speaking in the Dáil today, Healy-Rae (whose brother Michael Healy Rae has also spoken out against the new initiative) asked the Taoiseach if he stood over a remark made by the Minister for Transport that he is ”road traffic terrorist”.

Minister Griffin said: “It’s a major step forward in terms of rolling out in rural Ireland the types of transport services that are available in urban Ireland.”

He also pointed out that Michael-Healy Rae had previously welcomed the initiative on Radio Kerry.

However, Danny Healy-Rae responded by standing up and the pair continued to shout insults at each other.

Leas-Ceann Comhairle, Pat the Cope Gallagher asked the two Kerry TDs to restrain themselves, saying:

We are not going to play the Kerry game here. It can be played in Croke Park.

Deputy Danny Healy-Rae said, “I am sorry but he rose me” to which the Leas-Cheann Comhairle replied, “Sorry it’s too late”.

Additional reporting by Cliódhna Russell

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