Over 120,000 protest in Dublin

Massive crowds turn out to support workers and oppose government policies such as the banking bail-out

Photo: WP members at start of rally 21.02.09
Workers Party members at the start of the Rally

The Workers' Party have welcomed the huge turnout at today's trade union rally in Dublin which has been attended by  over 120,000 people.
Workers' Party President Michael Finnegan said the massive turnout showed the real anger held by workers that they are being singled out to bear the cost of the banks bailout and the economic crisis caused by corruption in the business world.
Mr. Finnegan said that the show of unity between public sector and private sector workers, between employed workers and the unemployed and a huge cross-section of ordinary Irish people gives a clear message to the Irish government that people are no longer prepared to be scapegoated to shore up utterly corrupt banking institutions, big business and property speculators.
"It is now almost six months since the government finally admitted that this country was in recession.  In that short period of time we have had blow after blow against working class people who have suffered disproportionately due to the crimes of senior bankers, business executives and profiteers.  People are prepared to take no more of this and it is now clear that this government will be punished severely at the forthcoming local and European elections", said Michael Finnegan.
"People need to see those responsible for this catastrophic collapse in Ireland's economy punished for their wrongdoing.  A token effort at pretend sharing of the pain such as a cut in top bank executives pay will fool nobody.  We need to see those responsible being removed from their position and those responsible for corruption going to jail".
"There is also a need to change the state's priorities and protect health, education and social programmes such as public housing.  We need to protect jobs both in the private and public sectors and create new jobs - something the state needs to do itself because the multi-nationals and native big business have shown they have no interest in doing unless it is for profit".
Mr. Finnegan said it was too late for the present Fianna Fáil / Green Party coalition to redeem itself.  "The government has lashed itself to the mast of the sinking ship of globalisation and banking speculators and should be prepared to go down with that ship.  They should resign immediately because they have no mandate whatsoever from the Irish people, and in particular no mandate from the Irish working class to implement present policies which will cause misery and economic disaster for at least a generation".
Issued Saturday, 21st February 2009

Peace, Work, Democracy & Class Politics