[Sinn Fein]

26 November 2001

Labour abstentions mean another year of waste charges

Sinn Fein Dublin City Councillor Dessie Ellis said last night that the failure of the Labour Party to stand united against the Bin Tax, resulted in the book of estimates for the year to come passing with the controversial tax intact.

``If the people of Dublin want to know why they are going to be paying this unfair double tax for another year they can ask the Labour party. The vote against the book of estimates was lost by three votes and four Labour party councillors either abstained or didn't turn up.

``People who voted for the Labour party on the basis that it would oppose such taxes and fight against the privatisation of our services have got a rude awakening. Sinn Fein was the only party to stand united against the Bin Tax and we will continue to campaign against it for as long as necessary and we are confident we have the support of the ordinary people of Dublin in doing this.

In the immediate aftermath of what was a heated council debate on the estimates, Cllr Ellis also expressed his continuing dismay at the way council business is conducted

``What we saw last night was a sham democracy with the government and the City Manager colluding in passing this tax. Fianna Fáil councillors told us that if we didn't pass the Bin Tax Minister Noel Dempsey would pass it for us. Is this the respect for local democracy that the government speaks of? The people of Dublin are entitled to ask who really runs the city; their elected representatives or the unelected bureaucrats in the Department of the Environment and the City Manager's office?

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