Taoiseach open to new Stardust inquiry

Enda Kenny has suggested new evidence is needed ahead of any potential Commission of Investigation

Taoiseach open to new Stardust inquiry

File photo. The interior of the Stardust which went on fire on the morning of the 14/2/1981, St. Valentines Day. Photo: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Enda Kenny has said he is open to holding a new Commission of Investigation into the Stardust disaster.

However, the Taoiseach says the inquiry can only be held if new evidence is brought forward to justify it.

His comments come ahead of a Dáil debate on a private members motion calling for a new investigation.

Enda Kenny says new evidence will have to be evaluated before a commission could be ordered.

"I don't see any difficulty in having the Government meet with the families here," he said in the Dáil.

"I'm quite willing to have a Commission of Investigation, but that evidence needs to be examined." 

The Cabinet was split yesterday as to whether a new investigation is necessary.

According to the the Irish Examiner, Super Junior Minister Finian McGrath is 'not for turning' on the need for an inquiry.

On his website, the Independent Alliance TD states he "supports the Stardust Relatives in their efforts for truth and justice".

48 young people died in the 1981 Stardust nightclub fire in Artane in Dublin, while more than 200 others were injured.

A previous tribunal suggested the fire was 'probably' caused deliberately.

The private members motion due before the Dáil today - supported by a number of independent and AAA/PBP TDs - argues: "The Stardust Relatives’ and Victims Committee have continually attempted to liaise with the Department of Justice and Equality and the Taoiseach regarding misgivings around previous investigations.

"The Government have repeatedly called for new evidence yet have refused to meet with the Stardust Relatives’ and Victims Committee regarding the new and updated evidence they have uncovered since reviewing Judge Keane’s Report of the Tribunal of Inquiry on the fire," it adds.

In December, members of the Stardust Victims’ Committee said: "We have presented his ministers and their officials with the new evidence time and again over the last number of years and yet they consistently refuse to recognise our case for a commission."