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‘Rural Ireland has once again slipped down the ladder of priorities for government’

An Independent TD has expressed her concern for the future of rural Ireland following the appointment of the new government.

Carol Nolan said that there was “clear shock and even alarm among many rural TDs” when the composition of the new government was announced at the weekend.

“The fact of the matter is, we now have an extraordinary lack of regional representation at Cabinet-level and an undeniable sense that rural Ireland has once again slipped down the ladder of priorities for government.”

“This sense of having been effectively abandoned in favour of a Dublin-centric approach was only made worse when we realised that Minister Heather Humphreys was going to head up the bizarrely combined department of Social Protection, Community and Rural Development and the Islands.”

‘Imagine if it was the other around?’

She stressed that it is almost like this government knows that the hammer of unemployment is going to fall hardest on rural Ireland and rural communities.”

“I hear the new ministers defending the absence of a senior Cabinet-level post for almost the entire north-east, west, and indeed the south-east of the country, and I just cannot comprehend the logic.”

“Imagine if it was the other around and the west and the south-east had nine senior ministers and Dublin had none.”

“Yet somehow, they expect rural TDs like me, to swallow the line that the pursuit of fair regional development is going to be unaffected?”

“No one believes that for a moment. This is an issue that I and my colleagues in the Rural Independent Group will be highlighting at every available opportunity,” concluded the deputy.

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