Gormley’s refusal to commit to independent flood investigation an abdication of responsibility – Buttimer
Minister Gormley’s unwillingness to conduct an independent inquiry to establish the cause of the recent serious flooding in Cork City is wholly unsatisfactory and gives two fingers to the people of Cork in their efforts to prevent such a travesty from occurring again in the future.
“Deputy Gormley’s refusal to instigate an independent inquiry into how and the why Cork was flooded is a clear abdication of responsibility by the Green Minister. Questions have yet to be answered as to why Cork was submerged under water and why the quay walls of Grenville Place collapsed. The River Lee catchment flood risk assessment and management study is clearly being long-fingered by a Government resolved to do nothing.
“There is a clear and compelling need for an independent investigation to ascertain the facts leading up to the release of water, the method of communication between the different agencies involved and with local people and businesses.
“We need to ascertain why there was a deficit in communications; why no early flood warning system was in place; why we do not have a coded flooding alert system and most pertinently in this case, who makes decisions on water storage and water discharge. This is about transparency and accountability. It is about getting answers to the questions that every citizen affected has been asking.
“The need for an investigation is based on a number of factors but most notably the fact that the report presented to Cork City Council by its manager, Joe Gavin, is completely at variance with what the ESB told Oireachtas Members of all parties at meetings in Cork and, furthermore, what it has stated publically.
“The Government’s reaction to date has been wholly unsatisfactory. The Minister has effectively given two fingers to the people of Cork. Serious questions remain unanswered and clarity must be obtained so that such occurrences, and subsequent devastation, can be avoided in the future.”