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Demonstration for the “Crumlin2”


Demonstration for the “Crumlin2”

On Wednesday 27th April, Ireland woke up to the news that water charges now looked to be suspended for at least two years according to sources who are negotiating the formation of the next government. This of course, means no new bills.  Standing Minister for the Environment, Alan Kelly stated on a news bulletin, that prior to the last general election, up to 70% of people have paid their water bills. Although, this figure has not been released by IW, Alan Kelly went on to say on RTE News, that the 70% figures will be made available in the very near future.

On that same day, at 5.30 pm, local residents met in Dublin 8, to highlight their concerns over the up and coming court appearance of the now known as the “Crumlin Two”. The Crumlin two, where once part of the “Crumlin 13”, Irish Water protestors who were arrested for breaches of public order at a protest. Of the original 13 protestors arrested, 11 have had their cases struck out. The two local people who are back in front of the judge at the Criminal Court of Justice for their 7th time regarding this case are expected to get a full hearing on Tuesday the 3rd of May, while more evidence is being collected, by the Garda.

One of the two, Vicky, who was arrested just over one year ago on the 20th of April 2015, has claimed on that day she was arrested, that the Garda were rude and verbally abused her. She was taken to Sundrive Garda station, where she was formally charged. There she was presented with two separate charges under the public disorder act. Vicky and one other protester were the only two of the Crumlin 13, to be charged that day as the other 11 received summons to appear in court at a later stage.

At the demonstration, protestors I spoke to generally felt that the trial was wasting the tax payer’s money, and taking up valuable court time. Others felt that there was a sinister edge to it. One young man felt it was a vulgar display of power and a media circus.

“Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 Says No!” an anti water charges activist group, organised a peaceful public protest. They all met up directly outside Dolphin’s Barn, Fire Brigade Station. While I was standing there for the some 40 or so minutes, the passing traffic and passerby’s voiced support for the group. Some passerby’s stopped and chatted to the protesters. Most were very happy with today’s news about IW, and some voiced concerns over the up and coming court cases.

A protest has been called to support the two, this Tuesday 3rd May, outside the Criminal Courts, Parkgate Street Dublin.

If reports are true and Irish Water is to be the can kicked down the line, it would seem that the protest has been successful at least for the time being.  In the interest of moving on from this period is it not now in the State’s interest to allow these protestors go?  A court case that has dragged on for just over a year with our exceptionally well paid legal must have come to a substantial cost for the people and trustfully, to what end? Who knows? One thing is for certain, the people of Dolphin’s Barn and Crumlin yesterday, did not think the two should have gone to court at all.

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