by James Quigley & Enda Graig
New evidence was posted on the facebook page by Michael Mooney, Letterkenny, last week. The evidence shows Lynn Boylan, Sinn Féin MEP, proposing a progressive water charge in the the European Parliament in Strasbourg on the 8th September 2015.
This new evidence contradicts denials by Ms Boylan which appeared onRTE News on 9th Sept 2015, ‘Boylan denies Sinn Féin backed water charges in European Parliament’. At the time anti water activists took the explanation at face value because the accusation came from a Fine Gael MEP. However, what this irrefutable evidence now shows is that while Sinn Féin was campaigning for the abolition of water charges and metering in Ireland they were the driving force for them in Europe.
The video shows Ms Boylan’s attempting to amend paragraph 92 of the European Citiizen’s Initiative Right2Water A8-0228/2015 . Ms Boylan was the main rapporteur of the original report and as such was responsible for preparing and presenting it to parliament. Her amendment was not successful, however, her original report including paragraph 92 was accepted.
Ms Boylan’s proposed amendment was;
″Mr President, I just have said to the Tabling Committee that we want to put forward an oral amendment for paragraph 92 and the amendment is;
calls on the Member States to introduce, in accordance with World Health Organisation guidelines, a pricing policy by the application of a progressive charge that safeguards people’s right to access a minimum quantity of water for living and reduces waste.″
Paragraph 92 of original report that was passed states;
‘Calls on the Member States to introduce, in accordance with World Health Organisation guidelines, a pricing policy that respects people’s right to a minimum quantity of water for living and cracks down on waste, providing for the application of a progressive charge that is proportional to the amount of water used;’
The smoking Gun
Michael Mooney, provided a link to the full European Parliament vote and included the following statement.
“WE presented it in black & white, now we present it in colour. This makes for a horrendous 35 seconds of viewing. Now we have the chief suspect NAILED for planting the bomb on our exemption from water charges. But she has many accomplices that didn't expect our investigations to uncover their cunning plan of deceit and betrayal on their own people. Firstly she denied knowledge of this paragraph. Secondly she was caught lying about having no knowledge as she tried to have it amended. Thirdly she and her accomplices still voted for it!”
Based on this evidence we would say that if the Oireachtas Committee on Funding Domestic Water was a court of law we would be entitled to call a mistrial and sack the anti water charges representatives who comprised 25% of it's members. With representatives like this it's no wonder we got the result we did. Now it looks like the Oireachtas Committee was hobbled before it even got started, possibly preordained and prearranged by political parties.
What sticks out a mile was the omission of Article 9.4 of the Water Framework Directive known as 'the Irish Exemption' in the final report of Oireachtas Committee. This was what Mr Mooney referred to as 'planting a bomb on our exemption'. Sinn Féin's support for water charges in Europe and the 9.4 Exemption is mutually exclusive.