Mr O’ Súilleabháin said;
"Recent comments made by Minister Brian Hayes suggesting that old age pensioners were 'getting away unscathed' were reckless and crudely designed to introduce another pre budget scapegoat into a growing mix. In the past few months we have seen other government reps do the same thing to a wide range of groups including farmers, parents, nurses and the disabled."
"Old age pensioners and other vulnerable groups should be safeguarded against any cuts in the coming budget. There is absolutely no justification for placing these people in the firing line when other progressive options have not been addressed."
"Sinn Féin believes that those who can afford to pay more should pay more. It's a simple proposition which makes clear sense yet our government seems incapable of getting it. The introduction of a wealth tax would make far greater economic and moral sense than the targeting of old age pensioners."