Westmeath ICMSA have described the plan to go close Mullingar DVO as a bizarre and inexplicable move that will hugely inconvenience large numbers of farmers right throughout Westmeath and large parts of the Midlands , a n area that the Westmeath ICMSA Secretary , Aidan Kenna, described as one of the most intensively farmed and agri-orientated regions in the state . Speaking this week, Mr Kenna said that Westmeath ICMSA had hoped against hope that sense would prevail in this affair and the bureaucrats involved would realise that there was little point in highlighting the role that farming will have to play in any national recovery while simultaneously stripping out all the local services that farmers depend on and telling them that they will now have to make round trips of 50 or 60 miles to deal with the DVOs as they are obliged to do. Mr Kenna said this was exactly the kind of decision that probably looked simple on paper but would cause enormous disruption on the ground.
"I'm sure that the Dublin civil servants thought that moving the operation to Tullamore from Mullingar was a minor administrative matter but, as is the usual way in Ireland , what they didn't seem to think about was the people whom that office is meant to be serving", pointed out Mr Kenna , who farms at Ballynacarrigy .
" It probably looked like a little spin up the road from the Department's offices in Dublin , but it's a very long haul when you're a busy, one-man operation, as is the case for the vast majority of farmers in Ireland today", continued Mr Kenna .
"There's one other point that I'd like to raise on behalf of Westmeath ICMSA", stated the Secretary of the Westmeath Executive of the country's specialist dairy farmer association.
"Farmers are well used to hearing lip service paid to their work and their sector. But the time has now arrived for concrete action and a demonstration of real commitment. That should mean that a concerted effort is made to take costs out of farming and this is a perfect example of the kind of area that is within the Government's control where they should be giving a signal to farmers that a real service is going to be offered and on a basis that suits the farmers – not the bureaucrats!", concluded Mr Kenna .
Ends. 3 May 2011.
Aidan Kenna, 086-3616508
Chairman, Monaghan ICMSA.
Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758
ICMSA Press Office