Updated: 24/11/17 : 06:00:34
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Govt must follow through on Sligo Garda Station commitments – Mac Sharry

Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Marc Mac Sharry has been told that a tender for the refurbishment of Sligo Garda Station has been issued and works on the building are due to be complete by the end of September next year.

Deputy Mac Sharry raised the issue with the head of HR with An Garda Síochána John Barrett who was appearing before the Public Accounts Committee yesterday.

“The delays in the provision of a new Garda station in Sligo are completely farcical.  For two years, I have been calling on the Minister for Justice to outline a timeline for the provision of a new building following a Government commitment back in 2015.  Since then there has been virtually no movement on securing a site for the new station and conditions at the Pearse road building have led to officers staging a protest”, Deputy Mac Sharry.

“Ministers Fitzgerald and Flanagan have been stonewalling on the issue for over two years.  Despite tabling several questions to the Ministers for Justice and the OPW seeking progress on a new site, the answers were vague, claiming that there would be “agreement on the purchase of a site soon” or that the Department would “reach agreement on the purchase shortly”. 

This hands-off approach continued this week when Minister Charlie Flanagan, despite assuring me in the Dáil that he would be “happy to engage” with me on the issue, subsequently told me that it wasn’t his responsibility to secure a site.

“This constant passing of the buck has to stop.  On the one hand we have a Transport Minister who has secured a commitment on the reopening of a south Dublin Garda station, while on the other we have a Justice Minister who is completely disinterested in the health and safety of officers who are working out of a condemned regional and divisional headquarters in Sligo"

Deputy MacSharry said yesterday, “This morning, I questioned the head of HR with An Garda Síochána John Barrett in the Public Accounts Committee about the situation at the station he confirmed that tenders for €1.25m for the refurbishment of existing the station are due in December and that works are to be completed by the 30th September 2018.  He also stated that procurement of the preferred site of the new station beside Summerhill College should continue in tandem with the refurbishment process.

“I would like confirmation from the Justice Minister that this process will be proceeding as outlined by John Barrett this morning.  The status quo is not an option”.