McGrath attacks ‘disgusting’ EirGrid approach

Angry: Tipperary South and West Waterford TD Mattie McGrath.

Angry: Tipperary South and West Waterford TD Mattie McGrath.

Tipperary South/West Waterford TD Mattie McGrath slammed representatives of EirGrid for their failure to provide TDs and Senators with ‘the straight answers they deserved’.

Speaking after the energy company’s appearance at the Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications, Deputy McGrath didn’t mince his words when condemning the company’s “disgusting” approach.

“It is absolutely disgusting to see the EirGrid representatives come before us and refuse to engage in honest debate around the many serious concerns which the whole Committee is raising,” he said after questioning EirGrid CEO Fintan Slye.

“They came to Leinster House last Wednesday and did nothing but continue their well-rehearsed routine of deflection and spin when difficult questions are asked or put to them.”

Deputy McGrath added: “I myself put it to Mr Slye that he seemed incapable of admitting any kind of wrong doing on EirGrid’s part in terms of the insultingly hollow public consultation process it has carried out to date.

“They simply will not answer the questions despite the almost heroic attempts of the Committee to try and force some straight talking answers from them.

“This is not just a matter of being extremely disrespectful to the Committee but more seriously it is grossly insulting to the people who are honestly living in dread of the future given the brutal manner in which EirGrid continue to dismiss their concerns.”

Mattie McGrath described Mr Slye’s method of answering Committee queries in “deliberately specialist and technical terms which did nothing to facilitate clear and comprehensive debate.”

He stated: “While there is no doubt that the actual mechanics of what needs to be achieved is complicated, the representatives of EirGrid were very aware before they arrived that they were not being called before a panel of electrical engineers…

“What does it say about EirGrid’s commitment to meaningful engagement when after two days of trying to get to straight answers to straight questions from them we are effectively still as much in the dark except for the extraordinary statement by its Chairman designate [John O'Connor] that he would hate to live near a pylon himself!”

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