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Order of Business

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Senator Terry Leyden

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Order of Business
Snippet Contents:

I second the amendment to the Order of Business put forward by Senator Darragh O'Brien, Leader of the Opposition, proposing to invite the Minister for Justice and Equality to the House. It is a very important issue because of the vote of no confidence. The Leader of the House, Senator O'Sullivan and I have been nominated by the Garda Representative Association, GRA, and the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors, AGSI, which are both tolerant groups and powerful organisations. When they voted no confidence in the Minister it became serious indeed. Therefore, the Minister should come to the House.
Will the Leader of the House arrange for the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Deputy Simon Coveney, to come to the House to give us an outline of the present state of play with regard to the recent controversies? I particularly resent the comments by the chief executive of the retailer Iceland about the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, which was the first organisation to highlight the difficulties and the crisis within the industry due to the entry of horsemeat into the system. The authority was courageous in highlighting this issue, which is now a European and international issue and one in which the Garda Síochána is involved. I know from farmers in my area and as someone coming from an organic farm that the standards required of primary producers by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine are stringent. These farmers feel let down by organisations that have not respected the quality of food from the farm gate to the fork. We will have to restore that respect again throughout the world, but the Food Safety Authority of Ireland should be credited. I believe the Minister should come to the House to give us a full outline of exactly what is happening at this point. It would be worthwhile from the point of view of contributions from very enlightened Members.