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"Legislature should not be excluded from transplant debate" - Micheál Martin

Micheál Martin accused the Government of trying to “dominate who debates what” in the Oireachtas.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin
Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin
Image: Laura Hutton/Photcall Ireland

THE FIANNA FÁIL leader has said that the legislature “has been excluded” from debating transplantation laws.

Micheál Martin, speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, said that he supports his party colleague Mark Daly in his attempts to have the Seanad recalled, regardless of the Attorney General’s opinion on the matter.

Government Chief Whip Paul Kehoe wrote to all deputies on Tuesday, saying that the Attorney General had advised any recall would be “redundant”.

The letter says that any move by the Seanad, which is due be recalled next week, to annul the laws would be illegal.

“Regulations made under the European Communities Act 1972 may not be annulled unless the Joint Committee on European Affairs recommends to the Houses of the Oireachtas that such regulations be annulled,” says the letter, which infuriated Daly.

Daly accused the Government of “trying to stifle debate” and was supported by his party leader.

“With respect to the Attorney General, I’m a legislator. Legislature should debate legislation, not be excluded from doing so. In respect to transplantation, which is a very important issue, it has been excluded from so doing.

“I think it’s within the remit of any legislature on a broad principle to endeavour to have such an issue debated.

It comes back to the executive in the Government trying to dominate what happens in the Dáil, what happens in the Seanad, who debates what and when it gets debated.

Read: Attorney General says Dáil recall to debate transplant legislation is ‘redundant’

Read: Irish Kidney Association calls Government organ donation plans ‘a waste of time’

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