Kenny ‘has no idea’ how many Longboat Quay situations exist

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said he is “convinced” other Longboat Quay situations exist but admits he has no idea how many.
Kenny ‘has no idea’ how many Longboat Quay situations exist

Pressed in the Dáil by Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams to state the number of potentially dangerous apartment complexes that were allowed to be built in the boom, Mr Kenny said he could not answer that.

“I cannot give the Deputy that answer, but what I am convinced of is that there are other Longboat Quay situations out there and other Priory Hall situations out there.

“And all of that has brought absolute wreckage to the careers and the ambitions and the lives of so many people in our country,” Mr Kenny said.

The Taoiseach said he wanted Environment Minister Alan Kelly to instruct local councils to investigate the scale of the problem nationwide.

Mr Kenny said the situation was unclear because some developers “absconded and are now not in business”.

Mr Adams insisted the Government was not treating the situation with enough urgency and had ignored calls from the Mahon probe to introduce an independent planning regulator.

The Sinn Féin leader said the Coalition needed to do more to help residents left in unsafe complexes.

“Nine hundred residents of Dublin’s Longboat Quay have been instructed to cough up millions of euro for repairs to their homes because they were built without adequate fire safety measures.

“They have been told that, unless they do so by 1 November, they face eviction,” Mr Adams said.

Leaders’ Questions also saw Fianna Fáil’s Micheál Martin round on the Taoiseach over the handling of Irish Water which he claimed had already cost the taxpayer €800m.

Mr Martin said the utility had been established on “fraudulent grounds” as EU authorities had refused to accept it as an independent body which could borrow money that would not form part of the national debt.

The Fianna Fáil leader said €550m had been wasted on water meters which would never be used in what amounted to a “colossal” misuse of taxpayers’ money.

Mr Kenny hit back by saying that Mr Martin was the one guilty of being a “fraud” on the issue because Fianna Fáil had previously backed water charges amounting to more than €400 a year.

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