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Enda Kenny dismisses 'hysterical' senators

The Taoiseach took a dim view of events in the upper house earlier as he insisted the government majority on the banking inquiry reflects the will of the people.

Enda Kenny
Enda Kenny
Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

ENDA KENNY HAS dismissed the “hysterical response” to the government’s adding of two coalition senators to the banking inquiry in order to regain its majority.

The Taoiseach was speaking after angry scenes in the upper house earlier today when the government pressed ahead with adding two coalition senators – Michael D’Arcy and Susan O’Keeffe – to the inquiry team.

The development followed a procedural mistake by the government last week which saw opposition senators add Fianna Fáil’s Marc MacSharry to the inquiry team and reverse the coalition’s majority.

Earlier Fianna Fail senator Ned O’Sullivan said that Kenny was asking the Seanad to approve something “that Hitler himself, with the Enabling Act would have been ashamed of”.

Speaking in Raheny today, Kenny said that he had heard this reference but insisted that “every Oireachtas committee always reflects the will of the people in a democratic society”.

He said that “events in the Seanad shouldn’t have happened the way they did”.

“I disregard completely the hysterical response from a number of senators. This is not about inter-party, personal politics it’s about determining what the facts are for the people of the country.”

He insisted there would not no politics on the banking inquiry committee because its chairman Ciarán Lynch “has so ruled”.

Kenny added: “My point is that you’re not going to have politics on this committee because the chairman has so ruled, but you need to be able to approve terms of reference, a work schedule and you need to be able to provide a report at the end of it.”

Read: Stephen Donnelly says he might quit the banking inquiry

Earlier: Taoiseach compared to Hitler as government regains majority on banking inquiry

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Hugh O'Connell

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