Updated: 05/10/17 : 05:38:13Printable Version
Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Marc Mac Sharry has hit out at the Government for failing to carry out essential upgrade works at Sligo Garda Station, while at the same time sanctioning the reopening of Stepaside Garda Station in Dublin.
In August, the Junior Minister at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform Kevin Boxer Moran committed to a new site for Sligo Garda Station within “three or four weeks”.
Deputy Mac Sharry commented, “Sligo Garda Station is a regional and divisional headquarters which houses an Assistant Commissioner, a Chief Superintendent, a Superintendent, 140 Gardaí and 20 civilian staff. The building has not been fit for purpose for many years, and in fact was condemned by the regional safety adviser of An Garda Síochána in October 2015. "There are no shower facilities and there has been no drinking water available in the station since October 2016."
"If someone is arrested, they have to be taken 15 miles to Ballymote because the cells in Sligo have been condemned. In short, the division is in dire need of a new building.
“Despite the obvious deficiencies in the Garda Station, no moves have been made to upgrade the facilities or identify a site for a new headquarters.
"This lack of action is in stark contrast to the cynical decision by Government to reopen Stepaside Garda Station in Dublin. Six weeks on from Minister Moran’s promise to find a new site for Sligo Garda Station and we are no further down the road."
Marc Mac Sharry TD hit out at the Government over failed promises at Sligo Garda Station
Deputy Mac Sharry continued, “A report on the reopening of Stepaside claims the decision to reopen the station was based on population increases. However, if this is the case, why are other areas with similar population increases not seeing their local stations reopen?
"In Meath, there has been a 5.9 increase in population; the same as Dublin, as well as a 59% increase in property theft and a 44% rise in burglaries. Crosskeel and Kilmessan have seen their Garda Stations close, while Oldcastle and Athboy only open part time.
"How come none of these stations, which have seen similar population increases to Stepaside, are earmarked for reopening?
“As is so often the case, all people are equal but some are more equal than others. While Minister Ross has secured the opening of his local station, the people of Sligo and Meath are left behind,” concluded the Sligo-base TD.