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Minihan Slams Dublin City Council’s Costume Extravagance

11/10/12

Louise Minihanéirígí Dublin City Councillor Louise Minihan has slammed plans by Dublin City Council to spend €20,000 on new ceremonial robes for city councillors. Minihan, who has revealed that the ceremonial robes cost €400 each, has described the plan as an ‘outrageous and inexcusable waste of taxpayer’s money’.

Speaking from Ballyfermot Councillor Minihan said, “On Wednesday October 10, all 52 Dublin City Councillors received an email from the City Manager’s office inquiring if we wished to order new ceremonial robes. The email included the shocking revelation that the new robes would cost a staggering €400 each. At a time when the people of this city are suffering from the effects of severe austerity inflicted by the Fine Gael/ Labour government, spending €400 on a ceremonial robe is an outrageous and completely inexcusable waste of taxpayer’s money.

“If each elected member of Dublin City Councillor were to request a new robe, council officials would be quite happy to spend over €20,000 on outdated and functionless costumes. That city council officials are willing to unnecessarily spend so much money at a time when funding to public services is being slashed across this city, is nothing short of disgraceful.

“Since becoming a member of Dublin City Council in 2007 I have made clear to officials that there was no place for the robes in council business and I have refused to wear them. The ceremonial robes are an unwelcome hangover from an archaic colonial system that has no relevance to the people of Dublin today. Like the robes and wigs of the legal system they are designed to re-enforce a caste system that tries to place the likes of judges, barristers and councillors above the rest of the population. They had no place in the last century never mind this one.”

Minihan concluded by calling on other councillors to refrain from ordering the new robes, “I am calling on the other members of Dublin City Council to join me in condemning such a scandalous waste of money. I would further call on them to give a commitment not to order new ceremonial costumes while families and communities across Dublin continue to suffer the full brunt of unjust austerity. We have been elected to represent the people of Dublin and to stand up and give a voice to our communities, not to play dress up in ceremonial robes.”

 

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