FF wants BUPA position clarified


The Fianna Fail spokeswoman on health has called for clarification of the legality of the products offered by BUPA.

Mrs Maire Geoghegan Quinn claimed that the Minister for Health, Mr Noonan, had handled the health insurance controversy disgracefully.

"No sure touch or competence has been shown during the entire affair and the matter has ended up in a shambles because of the Minister's failure to attend to the issue in time," she said.

DRUG counselling, a local creamery, a Custom House and a meditation garden were key parts of projects which won £25,000 each in the AIB Better Ireland awards.

Two of the four are Co Limerick community projects, and the others are from Dublin and Cork. The Taoiseach, Mr Bruton, presented the prizes at a ceremony in Dublin last night.

One of the Limerick awards was for the refurbishment of the city's Custom House to house the internationally important Hunt collection of original works of art and antiquities. The other was for the community council in Drumcollogher, Co Limerick, which restored the local creamery in 1989 to mark the centenary of the Irish co operative creamery movement. It has also assisted in the development of a small enterprise centre in the village and has just completed a social housing project for the elderly at a cost of almost £800,000.

The Dublin winner, the Merchants Quay drugs project, will use the prize money to employ a training co ordinator. The centre caters for some 200 people daily and has 2,500 clients. It is operated by 10 paid workers and 40 volunteers.

The Bessborough project, in Cork, won its award for work carried out in a park in the south city Mahon area. A former stables area has been restored for use as a local museum and a wooded area has been developed as a meditation garden. A heritage park is also planned.

Winners of £5,000 awards were: Ardnaveigh/St Malachy's cross community group, Antrim; Oak Leaf boxing and youth club, Derry; the north inner city after school activities project, Dublin; the CARI Foundation, Limerick; Children's Group Link, Waterford; Ulster Orchestra Society Ltd, Belfast; Cork Printmakers Ltd; Ireland Literature Exchange, Dublin; the APIC Centre, Dublin; St John's Listowel Square Ltd, Kerry; Ennis Civic Trust, Clare; Inishowen Maritime Heritage Company Ltd, Donegal; Marsh's Library, Dublin; Stephenstown Pond Trust Ltd, Louth; Elphin Area Community Enterprises Ltd, Roscommon; Workspace Draperstown Ltd, Derry; the Big Issues, Dublin; Mayo North Heritage Centre Ltd; Grangemockler Camphill Community, Tipperary; and Tallow Enterprise Group Ltd, Waterford.