Sunday, January 15, 2012

Mistake was government’s, not pensioner’s – Kelly

Cllr Anthony Kelly has said that the recent pension tax debacle was the mistake of the government, not old age pensioners. The Wexford Sinn Féin councillor described the government’s handling of the situation as shambolic and a damning indication of what Fine Gael at the helm of power really means for ordinary people.

“The government’s treatment of 150,000 pensioners who were sent letters from the department of revenue telling them that they might be claiming more than they are entitled to is outrageous,” Cllr Kelly said. “I want to insure people who received these letters within my constituency that they are not to blame and that the fault lies solely with our government. It is incredible that only now are two departments, revenue and social protection, sharing information on people claiming state pension, and the result of this revelation is that innocent pensioners are being treated like common thieves by the government.”

“In a week when our people faced the introduction of an increased VAT rate, household charge and increased fuel and motor taxes, Fine Gael and Labour sent 150,000 old age pensioners another late Christmas gift in the form of these degrading letters. Did they not have enough to worry about I wonder?”

“The government’s handling of this situation has been shambolic. Not only do they owe every one of the 150,000 affected pensioners a sincere apology, a full enquiry should also be launched to discover how such a gross action was allowed to happen. This pension tax debacle has been a damning indication of what Fine Gael at the helm of a government really means for ordinary people across this island.”

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