Government forgets to take its own side in AIB debate

A motion passed in the Dail today because the Government failed to call a vote

There's embarrassment for the Government this afternoon after the Dáil passed a motion that they shouldn't sell off any shares in AIB until the fiscal rules are changed.

Labour put forward the motion saying the rules needed to be changed so that any proceeds from the sale of the bank would be used for infrastructure investment rather than paying down debt.

However, the Government failed to call a vote to block the motion so it passed, with some saying that Fine Gael were clearly distracted by the leadership campaign.

The government can however just ignore the Dáil vote and proceed with a sale if it wishes.

Labour leader Brendan Howlin tweeted saying "Government TDs forgot to take their own side. Labour motion delaying sale of AIB shares passed.”

Some sources have played down the impact of the Labour Party motion being passed, since the Government has already made a decision to press ahead with the AIB sale and the motion did not go through a Dail vote that would have reflected the opinion of parliament.

Sinn Féin finance spokesman Pearse Doherty also gave his opinion on the situation saying "The Dáil passed the motion not to sell AIB until the fiscal rules were re-negotiated, because the Government forgot to call a vote. It was distracted by the leadership issue."