Tag Archives: Noel Grealish

Independent TD Noel Grealish; remittance figures, from the Central Statistics Office, provided to Mr Grealish last month

This morning.

On Morning Ireland, RTÉ journalist Rachel English asked Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe about Galway West Independent TD Noel Grealish’s comments about remittances sent out of Ireland.

Yesterday, during Leaders’ Questions, Mr Grealish said:

“I bring to the Taoiseach’s attention the amount of money being transferred out of Ireland in personal remittances. Over the past eight years alone over €10 billion has left the country by way of personal transfers. That is a staggering amount of money.

The top five countries to which money was transferred in the past eight year include €843 million to Lithuania and €1 billion to France. The top three countries were: €1.54 billion to Poland, €2.7 billion to the United Kingdom and €3.54 billion to Nigeria.

These figures have been published by the World Bank which defines “personal remittances” as the sum of personal transfers and the compensation of employees.

It includes all current transfers in cash or in kind between resident and non-resident individuals independent of the source of income of the sender.”

“…Taoiseach, €3.4 billion transferred to one non-EU country is astronomical. Have Revenue or the Department of Finance any way of tracking this money or where it is coming from?

“Are mechanisms in place to ensure the money that leaves this country in personal remittances has been fully accounted for within the Irish revenue and tax system and is not the proceeds of crime or fraud?”

However, Mr Grealish was provided with significantly lower figures by Fine Gael TD Sean Kyne last month (see table above).

Further to this…

Mr Donohoe told Ms English this morning:

The figures provided to me today by the Central Statistics Office are some way short of this. It is difficult to accurately estimate this but it can be modelled and the Central Statistics Office indicates that, across many years, that figure has been around €17million per year.”

The minister went on to say that, given the disparity between Mr Grealish’s figures and those of the CSO, it’s important for Mr Grealish to “make clear exactly where these figures are coming from” and “why he’s singling out particular country outside the European Union”.

Ms English and Mr Donohoe also had this exchange…

Rachel English: “It seems that the figure you quoted this figure of an average of €17million a year going to Nigeria and that contrasts, it should be said, with in 2017, €342million going back to Poland, €92million to Lithuania, €43million to India, €50million to Latvia, it seems that these figures were provided to Noel Grealish. Why do you think then that he used the other figure yesterday?”

Paschal Donohoe:It’s up to him to clarify his intentions and up to him to clarify his use of figures. I’m very happy to clarify my view on these issues here which is that there has been much change in our economy, much change in our society as a result from people from elsewhere in Europe and outside of Europe coming to our country.

“It’s the kind of experience that Ireland visited to many other countries at other points in our history. We should have a degree of generosity and focus on the facts when we are debating this.”

In September, Mr Grealish referred to asylum seekers as “economic migrants from Africa who are coming here to sponge off us”.

H/T: Gavan Reilly.

This afternoon.

Alternatively

This afternoon.

Comments by Independent TD Noel Grealish have been branded as “racist” after he told the Dáil that €10 billion has been sent abroad over the last eight years.

The Galway West TD told the Dáil that the money has been sent to countries such as Poland, Nigeria, the UK and France.

He asked if Revenue or the Department of Finance had anyway of tracking where this money was coming from.

Amid palpable tension in the Dáil chamber, Solidarity-PBP TD Ruth Coppinger said the question was an example of disgraceful racism.

Grealish comments branded ‘racist’ in Dáil over cash transfer claim (RTÉ)

Independent TD Noel Grealish

This morning in today’s Irish Times.

Solicitor and partner at Abbey Law Wendy Lyon has dissected Independent TD Noel Grealish’s claims about asylum seekers before writing:

If there is to be a debate on how Ireland responds to its international obligations towards people seeking protection, our politicians and media have a duty to ensure it takes place in a context where claims like these will be fact-checked and falsehoods exposed.

It is not enough to merely report what Noel Grealish says or ask him to “clarify” his comments – it must be shown that he is wrong.

In fairness.

Noel Grealish’s views of asylum seekers are based on myth (Wendy Lyon, The Irish Times)

Rollingnews

 

Cllr Thomas Welby at a meeting in Oughterard, Co Galway last night; Connemara Galway Hotel; Independent TD Noel Grealish; tweet about the meeting last night

Last night.

A public meeting took place in Oughterard, Co Galway, amid rumours that Connemara Gateway Hotel – which has been closed for more than 10 years – is to be used as a direct provision centre.

The 60-room hotel is being refurbished while a tender process is under way to find locations for new direct provision centres in the west of Ireland.

According to Teresa Mannion’s early morning report on RTE today local councillor Thomas Welby called the meeting while, according to an The Irish Times report by Bernie Ní Fhlatharta,  Cllr Welby told those present that neither he nor any of the other politicians present – including Minister of State Sean Kyne and Independent TDs Catherine Connolly or Noel Grealish – had any knowledge of any plans for the hotel.

Neither RTÉ nor The Irish Times reported this morning on comments that were allegedly made by Independent TD Noel Grealish at the meeting.

However, RTÉ has since reported that Mr Grealish told the meeting that the majority of Africans coming to Ireland are “economic migrants” in the country “to sponge off the system”.

According to a second lunchtime report by Ms Mannion, Mr Grealish also reportedly said they would not be Syrians from what he called “good Christian families”.

This morning, on RTE’s Today with Seán O’Rourke, Ms Ni Flatharta did report on the comments that she recorded as having been made by Mr Grealish and Galway TD Catherine Connolly confirmed Ms Ni Flatharta’s account of what was said.

Ms Connolly, who believes between 750 and 1,000 people were in attendance at the meeting, told Mr O’Rourke:

“It was overwhelming. I found it difficult to get up to the top table where we were sitting.  I went to that meeting, as I do to all meetings really. But I inquired what it was about and I was told it was about an unauthorised development.

“I sat there and listened to it. I have to say, at various stages, it was very troubling – some of the comments made. Having said that, I understood the genuine anger of the people.

“And I sat there and listened. And comments were made exactly as the journalist has outlined. Including that ‘they weren’t Christians being persecuted’ which was, I took a note. ‘We’re not talking about the persecuted Christians’ amongst other comments.

“Now, I have to say, that did not reflect the conflict, the people that were there. But certainly the anger was palpable. I had to use all my energy to stand and get my thoughts together in relation to this matter.

“Now I sit on a Public Accounts Committee and I’m very familiar with it from the money point of view. And I gave out, I tried to correct some of the facts that were given out as facts and because wrong figures were being given.

“…I pointed out that I was totally opposed to Direct Provision as a way of dealing with asylum seekers, that it was inhumane and had caused problems. However, that I was worried about some of the matters that were being commented on as facts and some of the things that were being said.

“I was heckled myself at one or two points. And I reminded people that I was there as a TD in a very friendly town and I must say that the vast majority of people, almost all of them, listened.

“I think that, I’m 100% behind the people if it’s about an unauthorised development, I have no time for unauthorised developments. In relation to this direct provision, I can see where people are coming from, in the sense of the Department of Justice has simply never learned any lessons from debacle after debacle and they’re clouded in secrecy and there’s no openness and accountability.”

Mr Grealish has yet to comment on the matter.

Listen back here

Minister booed as Oughterard rejects direct provision centre (Bernie Ní Fhlatharta, The Irish Times)

Concerns former Galway hotel may house asylum seekers (RTE)

Grealish under fire for alleged ‘spongers’ comments (RTE)

Pics: Teresa Mannion and Rollingnews

UPDATE:

In The Irish Times on Friday, September 13, Ms Ní Fhlatharta reported that Mr Grealish specifically told the meeting:

“We’re not talking of good Christian Syrian families who were persecuted and hounded out of their own country by Isis.

“More than likely it will be economic migrants from Africa who are coming here to sponge off us.”

Oughterard row: ‘It’s a little town and we like to keep it the way it is’ (The Irish Times, September 13, 2019)

washing

“…That’s the fear expressed this week by [Independent] Galway West TD Noel Grealish, who also predicted that the era of young females preparing for a night out with twenty minutes under the shower will also become a thing of the past.”

TD fears that arrival of water charges could lead to less washing (Connaucht Tribune)

Thanks E