Statement by Labour Leader Eamon Gilmore TD
This deal announced this evening with the EU and the IMF is a national sell out that will leave the citizens of this country with a crippling level of debt for years to come, while the majority of the international bondholders are required to make no contribution at all.
The rate of interest accepted by Fianna Fail is penal and is significantly in excess of the rate that Greece was required to pay. The Irish people will now have to come up with annual interests payments amounting to billions of Euro.
The National Pension Reserve Fund is effectively to be cleaned out and the contents handed over for the benefit of the banks.
The Fianna Fail government has shown no backbone, no negotiating ability and no authority. The EU and the IMF have had a walk-over in negotiations with a broken and demoralised government, that is serving out its notice and which has neither the political mandate or the moral authority to conclude such a deal.
The problems we have been experiencing are fault of the Irish Government, not of the Irish people. Ireland has obligations as a member of the Eurozone to fix the problem, but European solidarity is a two-way street and this government has failed to secure a fair bargain for Ireland.
If ever we wanted confirmation that the Lenihan bank guarantee of September 2008 was the biggest misjudgment in the history of the state, then this sorry deal provides it.
This a sad and sorry day for our country and the direct result of Fianna Fail mismanagement and irresponsibility.