Daly in Dail comments on alleged ‘Garda involvement in drug trade’

‘Re-emergence over the past weekend of drugs which had been lost six years ago coming back into the station.’

Sligo News File

During a Dail discussion on supports available to Garda whistleblowers, TD Clare Daly said it has been established that “there has been Garda involvement in the drugs trade
in Athlone.”

Clare Daly, TD

She said: “Critically when Garda officials turned around and said they had not completed their own internal report, GSOC could not publish its report.” As a result, “a Garda whistleblower in the Minister’s constituency, where Garda involvement in the drug trade has been proven not just in Athlone, but also in Laois with the re-emergence over the past weekend of drugs which had been lost six years ago coming back into the station, is out sick and on the floor without any support whatsoever.”

“All of these matters have supposedly been under investigation for four years.”

Responding to points made by the Minister Charlie Flanagan she replied that “he can dress it up anyway he likes but it has been established that there has been garda involvement in the drugs trade in Athlone.

She said: “It is a fact that no action has been taken against those responsible.

“It is a fact that the person who made the allegations is out sick and his senior manager has recently been promoted despite being at the centre of allegations of bullying and harassment. Those allegations have not been investigated.

“We have a mechanism which is not fit for purpose.”

Referencing matters earlier put by Deputy Mick Wallace she said they “were not included even on the agenda.

“There is a huge deficit in the context of accountability, with people inside An Garda Síochána putting their necks on the line and not getting support from the agencies in this State. Deputy Flanagan is the Minister.

“If GSOC is saying it, the whistleblower is saying it and people in this House are saying it; then a lot more needs to be done than is the case at present.

“I think the Minister should investigate and answer the questions that he refused to even table, such as those from Deputy Wallace that were disallowed.”

Health Minister under pressure to add drug for treatment of “ultra-rare” condition to Drug Payment Scheme

Vimizim said to be only enzyme replacement therapy for inherited disease that affects major organ systems in the body.

Thousands of patients also demanding the restoration of unique pain treatment to the reimbursement support.

Sligo News File.

A TD is urging Health Minister Simon Harris to add the only drug available for the treatment of Morquio Syndrome to the Drug Payment Scheme.

Marc MacSharry TD

The disease which Marc MacSharry has described as “ultra-rare” is an inherited condition that affects major organ systems in the body.

Vimizim, produced by Irish drug company BioMarin, is said by the manufacturer to be the only enzyme replacement therapy to address the cause of the disease.

MacSharry said he had met some of the patients using Vimisim last year during a visit to the Oireachtas.

“Having discussed their condition with them and the difference that this drug has made to their quality of life, I am convinced that it should be added to the Drug Payment Scheme.”

He said patients have been able to access the medication through a free drug scheme run by the manufacturer but “it cannot be bought here.”

Simon Harris TD,
FG Minister for Health.

The medication, he said, is obtainable in Northern Ireland, the UK, France, Germany and other countries.

“If they are acknowledging that the drug works, I see no reason why the HSE Drugs Group should not also accept the evidence and ensure continued access to the drug.

“Indeed, it would be deeply ironic if this drug, which is manufactured in Ireland by BioMarin, is not available to patients in Ireland.”

MacSharry said he was calling on the Minister for Health Simon Harris, “who met with the two girls in the Oireachtas before Christmas,” to make a commitment to ensure that the drug will be reimbursed by the HSE and that patients who need the drug will be able to have access to it.

Meanwhile, a storm of protest has followed restrictions placed on a treatment for pain, known as Versatis.

Joe Duffy RTE Liveline.

The RTE Joe Duffy radio show has been almost overwhelmed as wave after wave of patients suffering “unbearable” pain have publicly voiced their distress over the decision of the Medicines Management Programme to clamp down on access to the treatment.

Versatis, a Lidocaine medicated plaster, is licensed for the symptomatic relief of neuropathic pain. It belongs to a group of medicines known as local anaesthetics. The plaster, placed on the skin, is understood to work by blocking the pathway of pain signals along nerves.

Hundreds of patients ringing the radio show have spoken of the pain relief they have experienced arising out of the use of the plasters. Many mentioned that the plasters were effective where all other treatments for pain had failed.

According to the Medicines Managment Programme, 25,000 patients were receiving the medication as of the end of 2016. But owing to what they said was “limited clinical evidence” the MMP recommended that the prescribing of the plaster under reimbursement support should be restricted to patients with a diagnosis of “post-herpetic neuralgia.”

Public meeting on closure of Easkey Post Office

Members of community invited to attend.

It’s believed the attendance will include public representatives.

Sligo News File

Organisers of a public meeting being called to consider the future of the Post Office in Easkey are urging the local community to give it their full support.

The service is regarded as a vital provision in the life of the village. However, with the retirement of the current postmaster, uncertainty surrounds the future of the office.

The meeting , which everybody is invited to attend, is being held in the local Community Centre on this coming Wednesday evening. Starting time is 8pm. 

It’s believed public representatives will be present to lend their support.


Bishops chilling warning: arguments being used to justify abortion could be used to justify ending lives of frail and disabled people

Some EU States have already legalised euthanasia.

Fears of a bloodbath of baby killing.

Sligo News File.

The campaign to legalise abortion is heading into stormy waters amid growing fears of a potential bloodbath of baby killing.

Bishop of Elphin, Kevin Doran…arguments being used to justify abortion could be used to justify ending lives of frail and disabled people.

Babies up to 12 weeks, and older, in some cases, could be put to death on demand if the Eighth Amendment is voted out of the Constitution.

The dread of a ‘killing spree’ worse even than the UK where the lives of 200,000 babies are wiped out every year is causing more and more to turn against Government abortion claims.

It is seen as well that, since 1973, a massive 60 million babies have been brutally destroyed in the womb in the United States – worldwide the figure since 1980 has soared to nearly 1.5 billion.

An alarmed source said: ‘The future for society that people of Ireland are being asked to agree to is plainly the acceptance of the daily torture and slaughter of little unborn innocents.

“How in the name of God could the extermination of a human being be adjudged a compassionate act or human right.

“I fully accept that circumstances will arise where a medic will have to intervene with the unavoidable death of a baby, but what the Government is attempting to impose stretches to the barbaric.”

In a Pastoral letter to Catholics in his diocese of Elphin Bishop Kevin Doran said that “taking away the right to life of unborn children undermines everyone’s right to life.”

He went on to strongly warn that: “The same arguments being used to justify abortion will be used to justify ending the lives of frail elderly people and people with significant disability.”

He said the Church has always taught that the deliberate taking of innocent human life is “gravely sinful.”

On “modern embryology”, he said this makes clear that “there is no conflict between faith and reason. The new human being, born after nine months, begins at fertilisation. The genetic identity of the new child is already there from the very beginning. Everything else is simply natural development.”

Baby at 12 weeks…face looks unquestionably human: Eyes have moved from the sides to the front of his head, and ears are right where they should be. The baby is just over 2 inches long.

The Bishop cautioned that “acceptance of abortion now will pave the way for other attacks on human life in the future.

“If society accepts that one human being has the right to end the life of another, then it is no longer possible to claim the right to life as a fundamental human right for anybody.”

He said: “A number of EU member states have already legalised euthanasia. I am convinced that if we concede any ground on abortion, the very same arguments which are now being used to justify abortion will be used to justify ending the lives of frail elderly people and people with significant disability.

“This is the final frontier. If we cross it, there will be no easy way back.”

In 2003, Belgium was the second State in the world to legalise euthanasia for adult patients after Holland liberalised the law a year earlier, becoming the first country since Nazi Germany to permit the practice. Abortion in Belgium is legal until 12 weeks after conception. Later abortions are allowed if there is a risk to the woman’s life, or the foetus shows risk of births defects.

The Belgian Senate and Parliament – bodies similar to Ireland’s Oireachtas – legalised euthanasia by lethal injection for children on 13 February 2014. A 17-year-old become the first teenager to have his life ended under the law.

Meanwhile, Belgians killed by euthanasia has reportedly surged. A newspaper has commented on the alleged killing by euthanasia of “a perfectly healthy” 24-year-old woman because she was suffering from “suicidal thoughts.”

Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act took effect in the Netherlands on April 1, 2002. It legalises euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide in specific cases.

The Netherlands legalised abortion in November 1984. There, abortions may be carried out on demand until the twenty-first week.