[Sinn Fein]

25th March 2002

MacManus says privatisation made illegal dumping of Sligo waste `inevitable'

Sinn Fein election candidate for Sligo/Leitrim Councillor Seán MacManus has strongly criticised the illegal dumping of domestic and industrial waste from Sligo in south Leitrim.

In a statement following the revelations, Cllr. MacManus said:

``It has recently come to my attention that a Sligo-based company currently engaged in refuse collection in the Sligo Corporation area is being investigated and may be responsible for this.

``Those few of us on Sligo Borough Council who opposed the privatisation of refuse collection in Sligo warned that illegal dumping would inevitably result. Now our worst fears have been realised, not even a month after privatisation has taken effect.

``Sinn Fein opposed the privatisation proposals when they were forced on us by Fianna Fail and Fine Gael early this year. We will continue to vigorously oppose privatisation, and to work together with all who are fighting to have public refuse collection reinstated in Sligo.''

MacManus concluded: ``In the meantime, this illegal dumping must cease immediately. We need to bring those responsible for this to account. I sincerely hope that this incident serves as the necessary wake-up call to the Sligo Fianna Fail and Fine Gael councillors, who voted for privatisation and may therefore bear the ultimate responsibility for this fiasco.''

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