Seanad Éireann - Volume 112 - 16 April, 1986
Order of Business.
Mr. Ferris Mr. Ferris
Mr. Ferris: It is proposed to take Nos. 1, 2 and 3 in that order. It is proposed to have a tea break from 5.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. If the business has not concluded by 6.30 we will have to take the emergency resolution, as you have so decided. I am ordering Nos. 1, 2 and 3 on the basis that somehow we might just achieve that, but I doubt it. I feel it is important to order them.
Mr. Lanigan Mr. Lanigan
 Mr. Lanigan: On the Order of Business and respecting what has been said by Senator Killilea and other Senators, I feel that, even though it is not on the Order of Business, we should in this House congratulate the Garda on the magnificent job they have done over the past week. They carried out their job nice and quietly and reached a successful conclusion. The Garda have come in for severe criticism in this House on occasions over the last number of years. I do not think we should allow the opportunity to pass without saying in this House that over the last week the Garda have continued to do a very professional job in a very professional manner. They have overcome a very severe difficulty, which had international connotations, and brought it to a very successful conclusion. When I say “international connotations” I am talking about the questions that are being raised here concerning Libya. The question of international terrorism has to be addressed in this House. Terrorism has to be isolated. What happened in the abduction of that woman was a terrorist act and the Irish Government, the Irish people, the Garda and the Defence Forces have conducted themselves in a manner which is exemplary. They dealt in this instance as professionals.
The Garda are very professional in their attitude and the Irish Army are also extremely professional in their attitude. We must today give credit to the Commissioner of the Garda and to every garda who was involved in bringing a very difficult international situation to a very successful conclusion without having to bring in international so-called terrorism or anti-terrorism organisations. The Garda deserve our praise.
An Cathaoirleach An Cathaoirleach
An Cathaoirleach: Because of the very exceptional circumstances, I will allow one Member from each group to speak and I would ask them to be brief.
Mr. McDonald Mr. McDonald
Mr. McDonald: I would like to join with Senator Lanigan in a very sincere word of thanks and praise to the Commissioner and every member of the Garda Síochána who were involved at any stage in the apprehension of the kidnappers. Moving through the country today, no  matter where one stops, whether it is for petrol or at any shop or meeting someone in the street, there is a great wave of relief expressed by ordinary members of the public. There is very sincere gladness that Mrs. Guinness has been freed and reunited with her family. We all feel safer in the knowledge that we have a police force that has certainly done a marvellous job and achieved the desired results. The important lesson for all to grasp from the last eight days is the fact that kidnapping does not really pay in this country and that the police force have ensured that those who attempt these dastardly crimes are not benefiting by them. Therefore I want to join in the congratulations to the Garda Síochána.
Mr. B. Ryan Mr. B. Ryan
Mr. B. Ryan: As one of the people who has said more critical things about the Garda in this House than many people, I should unequivocally — and I know I am speaking for all the Independent Members of the House — record my enormous admiration for the job the Garda have done in the last week. It is to their credit to bring it to such a successful conclusion. I actually heard about it on the BBC radio news this morning. It was particularly gratifying to hear that such an achievement and such a success by the Garda actually squeezed out the other great international story from being the number one story on the BBC radio news. It was a great job, very well done and done in a manner which befits the traditions of a civilised police force dealing with terrorism.
Mr. Ferris Mr. Ferris
Mr. Ferris: I want to join with my colleagues in our tribute to the forces of law and order in this country. Particular reference has been made to the Garda and the Army in this instance. I discussed this matter with Senator Lanigan before we came into this House and agreed totally with his views that it is appropriate on occasions like this that the House should express its appreciation of the good work that has been done quietly this week by the Garda in what could have been a very difficult situation. If there had been a loss of life involved in the actual final rescue, many people would be condemning the Garda if they had used excess force or  otherwise. As it happened, the actual culmination of this matter still presented an extremely tricky situation and lives could have been lost. We commend the people involved in the rescue who were armed that in this instance there was no loss of life and that the person who was abducted against her will and the will of the nation was safely returned to her family. I would like, a Chathaoirligh, if you would, on behalf of the Members of the House, express our good wishes to the family for Mrs. Guinness's good health and also to express to the Garda Commissioner and the Army authorities our appreciation of how they handled this very tricky matter. We are living in a democracy in which the forces of law and order will have to be seen to be successful and to do their business correctly. On this occasion they have achieved our ideals of what a force of law and order should do.
An Cathaoirleach An Cathaoirleach
An Cathaoirleach: Before I call on Senator Ryan I would like if the Leader of the House and the Leader of the Opposition had mentioned it to me before I came in. Senator Kiely wishes to speak on the Order of Business.
Mr. Kiely Mr. Kiely
Mr. Kiely: If items Nos. 1 and 2 are not completed, will item No. 3 be taken this evening or will it be put back until some other week? Could other similar motions be put back a further week? This motion has been put back already and now it is going to be put back again which I think is unfair.
Mr. W. Ryan Mr. W. Ryan
Mr. W. Ryan: I have nothing to say now because Senator Kiely has asked the question I was going to ask. It looks as if item No. 3 will not be taken this evening because you are taking Senator Brendan Ryan's motion at 6.30 p.m. and we conclude at 8 p.m. It is unfair, because this motion was already adjourned. It should have been taken before Easter and it was put back for some other reason. It is not fair to other parties and to the Fianna Fáil Party in particular who want to put forward a motion for discussion.
Mr. M. Higgins Mr. M. Higgins
Mr. M. Higgins: In regard to the very valid points made by Senators Ryan and Kiely I would like to say that, as the  mover of the resolution in question, which calls for the establishment of a banking commission and which deals with money lending and related matters, I would be very anxious that this matter be resolved and that the vote be taken this evening. As one of the Senators who stood when you called for five Senators I was of the opinion that the situation in Libya was one that overshadowed every other consideration. I hope that the resolution can be concluded and the matter resolved as quickly as possible.
Mr. Cassidy Mr. Cassidy
Mr. Cassidy: I wish to ask when it is proposed to take No. 20. The Minister is here now and we have been promised this for the last 12 to 18 months. Every time I get up in this House, which is about once a month, to ask this question I have been told that they will have word for us the next day the Seanad sits. We have now started a new term and I would like to ask is it going to be taken in this term or in the foreseeable lifetime of the present Government?
Mr. Durcan Mr. Durcan
Mr. Durcan: Could the Leader of the House clarify the Order of Business for tomorrow? If items Nos. 1 and 2 are not completed will we continue tomorrow or will we be dealing with other matters tomorrow?
Mr. Ferris Mr. Ferris
Mr. Ferris: Having decided on the emergency resolution it means that, according to Standing Orders, no other business can take place after that. That is one of the reasons that No. 3, if it is not reached before that, will have to be adjourned to the next normal day for taking Private Members motions, which is on Wednesday of next week. As Senator Higgins has said, unfortunately that is the luck of the draw. It is a question of the House deciding what is an emergency and then having to fit in other matters according to Standing Orders. In my opinion it will be next Wednesday before it will be taken unless there is another emergency resolution then, which could easily happen.
Referring to Senator Cassidy's question, I know the Leader of the House has been in touch with the Minister's office about this and the matter will be taken at the appropriate time when it is moved  by the Government. I would be more worried about it if I did not have other legislation to deal with. It is important when the House sits on Wednesdays that it deals with Government legislation. I have already ordered two pieces of Government legislation for today's Order of Business. It is not usual to deal with legislation on Wednesday except by agreement. That applies to the last question which was asked. It means that we will be dealing with other business tomorrow, not Nos. 1 and 2. We are taking Nos. 1 and 2 today and No. 3 if we get to it. We will adjourn from 5.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. and then we will take the emergency resolution. Tommorrow we will revert back to the normal procedure of taking motions.
Order of Business agreed to.
Seanad Éireann 112 Order of Business.