Future of the Seanad
Sir, – One of the aspects of proposed Seanad reform that has received little attention is the opportunity to provide representation in the Oireachtas for citizens living outside the State.
Some years ago, on a visit to New York, Enda Kenny articulated the benefits that would accrue from having representation from the Irish diaspora in Seanad Éireann. In addition, we have seen the value brought by the likes of Gordon Wilson and Maurice Hayes articulating a Northern perspective within the Oireachtas. As post Belfast Agreement politics develops in the North, the addressing of all-island issues, such as energy, agriculture, water, tourism and external investment would benefit greatly from dedicated Northern voices within a reformed Seanad Éireann. The benefits of such reform in engaging our global and northern citizens will go unexplored if we rush headlong into abolition. – Yours, etc,