Boxer Moran takes aim at Shane Ross: ‘Do we not want people to drive on the roads?’
Independent Alliance divided as OPW Minister says red tape has ‘gone too far’
Kevin “Boxer” Moran admitted he was livid about the matter, “and I made that clear to Shane last week”.
Minister for Transport Shane Ross’ attempts to tighten road traffic legislation have been strongly criticised by his Independent Alliance colleague Kevin “Boxer” Moran.
Mr Moran, who is Minister of State at the Office of Public Works and a TD for Longford-Westmeath, said the proposals for increasing penalties for motorists caught speeding or unable to produce their driving licences are a step too far.
He told The Joe Finnegan Show on Shannonside Northern Sound that it was no secret that he was totally opposed to the planned law. “Now is not the time,” he said.
Mr Moran admitted he was livid about the matter, “and I made that clear to Shane last week”.
Instead of more laws, more resources should be made available to gardaí to focus on enforcing existing laws, he said.
“I did tell him [MR ROSS]that we’ve gone too far in relation to red tape, we need to let people get on with their lives.”
He said that he knew what it is like to lose a family member on the roads as his brother was killed in a traffic accident. “But the measures are too restrictive,” he added.
When asked if Mr Ross had run the proposals by him, he replied: “No”.
“I told him I would rather give my opinion to him before I go on air. I am totally against it. We’re all Independent, we all do our own thing. At the same time, we’re in Government, we’re together, a collective, and we take that approach,” he said.
“As far as I’m concerned, with the level of reaction from the general public, but let’s put the general reaction out of it, let’s talk about the legislators, which is the Ministers in Government, all of them that met me, I could name them all, they all wanted to know my opinion - which is that it’s a step too far.
“I don’t think people would object to mobile phone penalty points, that’s the killer, no one goes out harm or cause death on the road.
“The new legislation on drink driving will affect rural Ireland, but it is protecting lives, but this is too severe. It’s different in Dublin when you’re bumper to bumper, but when you go down the country it’s not, we have speed control vans, we have gardaí doing their job, but to go to the extent that the Minister wants is too far.”
Mr Moran said Mr Ross might be determined to bring in the legislation and that it was now gone to a committee, but many politicians were opposed to it.
“I made that clear to the Minister that I am against it, I cannot support it. There’s no such thing as a red line. I believe in dialogue and consultation, but when you put forward proposals of that measure to have such a damaging effect on Ireland as a whole, it’s too severe.
“We brought in penalty points, we brought in NCTs, how far do we have to go? Do we not want people to drive on the roads? Everybody has a responsibility when we get on the roads, to behave as normal human being, not to create harm or danger or create speed.”