TD admits Galway direct provision meeting had 'some very troubling comments'

TD admits Galway direct provision meeting had 'some very troubling comments'
Independent TD Catherine Connolly

Independent TD Catherine Connolly has told of her concern at the inaccurate figures being presented as facts at a public meeting in Oughterard on Wednesday night.

Ms Connolly said she had attended the meeting on the understanding that it was about an unauthorised development. But it was a meeting to protest the rumoured plan to turn a former hotel into a direct provision centre for asylum seekers.

The Galway West representative told RTÉ radio’s Today with Sean O’Rourke show that at various stages during the meeting there had been “some very troubling comments.”

Specific comments about “persecuted Christians” did not reflect well on the people who attended the meeting, she said.

Ms Connolly pointed out that she sits on the Public Accounts Committee and was familiar “from the money point of view” with the issue and had tried on a number of occasions to correct the incorrect figures “being given as facts.”

She said she was opposed to direct provision for asylum seekers, but when she had expressed concern at the ‘facts’ being given to the meeting she was heckled.

“I have no time for unauthorised developments, but I can see where people are coming from. The Department of Justice have not learned any lessons from debacle after debacle, everything is shrouded in secrecy.”

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