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Pearse Doherty Leah Farrell
Leaders' Questions

Tánaiste accuses Sinn Féin of 'Jekyll and Hyde' approach to housing during heated Dáil exchange

The Ceann Comhairle was forced to call for order and threatened to suspend proceedings.

TÁNAISTE MICHÉAL MARTIN accused Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty of being “Dr. Jekyll to Davy Stockbrokers” and “Mr Hyde when it comes to the Dáil” during a heated debate on housing during Leaders’ Questions today. 

“I would ask, what should the Irish people believe when it relates to Sinn Féin and housing policy?,” Martin asked. 

His comments were made in response to Doherty accusing the Government of “driving house prices out of control and out of reach of ordinary families”. 

Addressing the Tánaiste, Doherty said: “You personally give a commitment to the electorate that if elected, you would deliver 50,000 affordable homes to purchase on prices less than €250,000. My question Tánaiste, and I’m sure many people are scratching their heads asking the same question, where are those homes today?”

In response, the Tánaiste said he disagreed “fundamentally” with his narrative and approach and said Fianna Fáil has built houses historically. 

He noted that over 30,000 houses have been commenced in the first four months of this year and said there is momentum in terms of house building in Ireland. 

He continued: “And then we’re trying to create sustainability into the future through the Future Ireland Fund, which you voted against yesterday.”

“You told Davy Stockbrokers that you would support the Future Ireland Fund? And you voted against it in the Dáil yesterday. It’s the classic Dr. Jekyll to Davy Stockbrokers but you’re Mr. Hyde when it comes to the Dáil and I know which personality I believe.

“But I would ask what should the Irish people believe when it relates to Sinn Féin and housing policy?”

The Ceann Comhairle was forced to call for order as Doherty and Sinn Féin’s housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin began to heckle the Tánaiste. 

“You couldn’t make this up. Homeownership is at the lowest level in 50 years under your government,” Doherty said and added that the Tánaiste did not answer his question. 

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