Sinn Féin

03/09/2017 | News release | Distributed by Public on 03/09/2017 12:07

Irish language service in the Houses of the Oireachtas a disgrace - Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh

9 March, 2017 - by Trevor Ó Clochartaigh

It's a shame that elected members cannot conduct their business in the Houses of the Oireachtas through the medium of Irish without a plethora of technical faults, lack of resources and Government neglect, according to Sinn Féin Irish and Gaeltacht spokesman, An Seanadóir Trevor Ó Clochartaigh.

Speaking during a debate in the Seanad this week on Seachtain na Gaeilge with Minister of State Seán Kyne, he said:

'There was a farce played out in the Dáil yesterday because of a question put by my colleague Peadar Tóibín to the Gaeltacht Minister when the interpretation system was not working because of technical problems and because she could not understand him, he was forced to turn to English.

'It is an insult to the elected members and to the small, dedicated and hard working staff in the Translation Department who are always there that the equipment is not working properly. The English language media were joking about how funny it was to have a Minister for the Gaeltacht relying on an interpretation system in order to understand Irish on 'Lá na Gaeilge' and the interpretation system was not even working.

'In the Seanad, I saluted those in the Houses of the Oireachtas who promote the Irish language from ushers to restaurant workers, civil servants, the media and the background staff.

'There is much work to do however. There is a backlog of Acts to be translated and I understand this is so due to a lack of staff. More people with Irish should be recruited in order to enhance the range of services

'For example elected members of the Welsh Assembly can use Welsh at any time, any where in the course of their work. Staff are hired in order to ensure that a full service can be provided constantly. This should be the case in Leinster House.

'State Departments share a large portion of the blame, saying that there are only 15 positions out of 18 000 for which Irish is necessary. Ministers are ignoring the Standing Committee on Irish, the Gaeltacht and the Islands as well, which is totally unsatisfactory.

'The community are doing great work altogether, but sadly the State is letting them down badly in their duty towards the Irish language and that must be rectified.'

Seirbhísí Gaeilge Tithe an Oireachtais náireach - Seanadóir Trevor Ó Clochartaigh

Is mór an náire nach féidir le baill tofa a gcuid gnóthaí i dTithe an Oireachtais a dhéanamh tré mhean na Gaeilge gan cuid mhaith anró de bharr fabhtaí teicniúla, easpa acmhainní agus faillí Rialtais, dar le hurlabhraí Gaeilge & Gaeltachta Shinn Féin, an Seanadóir Trevor Ó Clochartaigh.

Ag labhairt dó le linn díospóireacht sa tSeanad an tseachtain faoi Sheachtain na Gaeilge seo leis an Aire Stáit Seán Kyne, deir sé:

'Bhí raic sa Dáíil inné mar gheall ar cheist a chuir mo comhghleacaí an Teachta Peadar Tóibín ar an Aire Gaeltachta nuair nach raibh an córas ateangaireachta ag obair de bharr fadhbanna teicniúla agus nach raibh fhios aici ceard a bhí sé ag rá agus b'éigean ar deire iompú ar an mBéarla.

'Is masla é seo do na baill tofa agus donn fhoireann, bheag, díograiseach i Rannóg an Aistriúchán a bhíonn ar fáil i gcónaí, ach nach bhfuil an chuid eile den chóras ag feidhmiú i gceart. Bhí na meáin Bhéarla ag trácht ar cé chomh greannmhar is a bhí sé Aire Gaeltachta a bheith ann a bhí ag brath ar chóras ateangaireachta chun Gaeilge a thuiscint, ar 'Lá na Gaeilge' agus nach raibh an córas aistriúcháin ag obair fiú.

'Thréaslaigh mé féin sa Seanad leis na daoine atá ag cur na Gaeilge chun cinn i dTithe an Oireachtais idir uiséirí, oibrithe sna bialanna, státseirbhísigh, na meáin agus na foirne cúltaca.

'Tá go leor obair eile le déanamh áfach. Tá riaráistí móra ann maidir le haistriúcháin ar achtanna agus tuigim gur mar gheall ar easpa foirne atá sé seo amhlaidh. Ba cheart níos mó daoine le Gaeilge a earcú le cur leis an réimse seirbhísí atá ann freisin.

'Mar shampla, is féidir le ball parlaiminte ar bith i gComthionóil na Breataine Bige an Bhreatnais a úsáid in áit ar bith ag am ar bith le linn a gcuid oibre. Fostaítear daoine ansin ionas go mbeidh an tseirbhís iomlánach sin ann an t-am ar fad. Ba cheart go mbeadh an cás céanna I dTeach Laighean againn.

'Tá locht mór millteach ar na ranna stáit freisin, agus iad ag rá nach bhfuil ach 15 post as 18,000 sa státchóras a bhfuil Gaeilge riachtanach dó. Tá neamhaird dhá thabhairt ag Airí ar an mBuanchoiste Gaeilge, Gaeltachta & Oileáin chomh maith, rud nach bhfuil sách maith ar chor ar bith.

'Tá an pobal ag deanamh an-obair ach faraor, táa an stat ag loic go dona ina cuid dualgais i leith na Gaeilge agus caithfear sin a chur ina cheart.'