Independent TD, Richard O’Donoghue, has slammed the government for failing to tackle fuel price increases over the last year.
The deputy, once again, shed light on the matter during Leaders’ Questions in Dáil Éireann on Thursday, December 9th, 2021.
Fuel price increases
He said the Individual Farmers’ Tractor Protest Group, Irish truckers and hauliers, SMEs, taxi drivers and front-line workers contacted his office concerning the matter ahead of today’s protest.
“The government has taxed every person in Ireland €10.88 on every €100,” the told the Dáil.
He said that farmers, truckers and hauliers are “not protesting for themselves only”. “They will be joined by SMEs and everybody in Ireland.”
“I have always said that it was the rest of the country against Dublin, but I have to stand corrected,” he added.
The deputy added that he had been contacted by “so many” people from rural Dublin. He said the government has “failed them” and “let them down”.
“People in north Dublin contacted me over the failure of the government to tackle the increase in the fuel tax, which every Minister, Minister of State and backbencher in Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party are backing.”
“The Tánaiste asked today how he could make a difference to every household in Ireland.”
“The government is taking 19 cents in tax from the increase on fuel since 2020. It took 81 cents in tax in 2020. It is now taking €1.05 from petrol.”
The deputy said that he spoke to Minister Donohoe in recent days, and he told him that he would speak with Minister Eamon Ryan.
“I had a meeting with the Minister, Deputy Eamon Ryan, and he told me he was talking to the Minister, Deputy Donohoe. I spoke to the Taoiseach. The only person from the Government who did not reply to me was the Tánaiste.”
“The government has control of this. Minister Donohoe told me last night that they cannot change the VAT, but they have control over the customs and excise.”
“They have control over the National Oil Reserves Agency, NORA, and they have control over the other 19%. They said they do not have control over the 23%.”
He asked the Dáil what did the government do when the EU told it to reduce taxes.
“It increased taxes. People were able to go into shops, get €100 worth of groceries and come home with two big bags of shopping.”
“Now, they have one bag of shopping for the same €100 because of the fuel increases the government has in its control but that it could bring down tonight,” he concluded.
A social media group entitled Irish Truckers and Haulage Association Against Fuel Prices is protesting today (Monday, December 13th).
It has called on the public to “stand together and get some answers”.
“We want cheaper fuel and cheaper taxes for everyone. Without us, you will have nothing. Now is the time to support us,” the group said in a social media post.
“Haulage is a dying game with no incentives to become a driver. We need to save this industry before it is too late.”
“Furthermore, we pay enough; we keep this country, and we get nothing in return.”
“If we have to come back again, it will be until over current government resign,” the group added.