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Danny Healy-Rae: Govt “raking it in” due to cost of fuel increases while people can’t afford to heat homes

Independent Kerry TD Danny Healy-Rae has blasted the Government for making life impossible for many people in Ireland by consistently increasing the cost of fuel. The TD says the rocketing cost of fuel is having a huge impact on people, some of whom cannot afford to heat their homes, and particularly those in rural areas who have no option but to drive to work, school or shops, with price hikes hurting commuters, including hauliers and farmers in rural areas.

Raising the issue in the Dáil on Tuesday, Deputy Healy Rae blasted Michael Martin, and said something urgently needs to change.

“The Taoiseach mobilised all his troops — his own Deputies, Fine Gael Deputies and the Greens — to continue hurting people going to work, including hauliers and farmers, who are suffering because of the exorbitant cost of fuel,” Healy Rae said.

“The Government is raking it in. It is taking more than a euro for every litre sold at the pumps, and poor people are perishing at home because they will not be able to afford the cost of home heating oil. The Government closed Bord na Móna when there was no real alternative.

“The Government does not want Shannon LNG. What does it want? Does it want to paralyse the country?”

 

His comments came as the Dáil addressed the spiralling costs of petrol, diesel and home heating oil ahead of St. Patrick’s Day recess next week, with TDs calling on the Taoiseach to take immediate action to find a suitable financial resolution for families and consumers suffering the impact of price hikes.

Another TD from the Rural Independents Group, Mattie McGrath, said he was very disappointed with the Taoiseach’s response to the escalating situation.

“We need action now,” Deputy McGrath said, adding that Ireland had ‘sleepwalked’ into the current cost of living crisis over a prolonged period of time, before the war in Ukraine erupted.

“We sleepwalked into this crisis. Blaming Ukraine and what goes on there is horrific. There is no excuse and the public know it. There is a 64 cent in excise and carbon tax on every litre of petrol and 54 cent on every litre of diesel. This can be wiped away with the stroke of a pen. I demand a full debate. 

“The Rural Independent Group has been on this for a long time. Anyone could have seen it coming. We need a debate. We need a resolution, as Deputy McDonald said, to strike out the charges and cut at least 50 cent from the price.”

Deputy Healy Rae continued: “Does [the Government] want to stop every wheel that is turning and have people perish with the cold?

“What does it want? How long is it going to keep the people suffering? It is nothing to smile about.”

In response, Mr Martin said that the Government was ‘actively considering’ an issue regarding fuel price increases, claiming that the Government had “no interest in hurting people.” 

Responding, Healy Rae argued: “The Taoiseach should realise the Government is hurting people, and every day it is going on, the more it hurts them.”

Yesterday, rural TDs Richard O’Donohoe, Danny Healy Rae, Mattie McGrath, Michael Collins and Michael Healy Rae tore into the Government on the energy crisis, stating that the Government is supposed to protect Ireland, “not tax us out of existence.”

 

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