Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien has been described as “a complete failure” ahead of a motion of no confidence next week.
The motion has been tabled by the Solidarity-PBP and is due to be debated by the Dáil on Wednesday.
Speaking to Newstalk, People Before Profit Paul Murphy TD said the motion had been tabled because the housing crisis had worsened even further since Minister O’Brien’s appointment in 2020.
“We now have record house prices; we have record rents and we have record levels of homelessness,” he said.
“It’s absolutely clear that the Government’s approach to housing is a complete failure.
“It has achieved only one thing which is to channel public money into the hands of big corporate landlords and big private developers.”
Last month, a report by Daft.ie found that rents in Dublin had soared by 14% in the space of only a year amid a “dramatic fall off” in supply.
Defending the Government’s record, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that his housing policy “is already bearing fruit.”
It is not an argument that Solidarity-PBP accepts.
“In the first six months of this year, there were less than 700 new homes built by local authorities,” Deputy Murphy said.
“That’s the bottom line in terms of actual delivery of public housing.”
The party wants a new minister to establish a state construction company and significantly increase the number of public homes being built.
“I think if we got a new minister and continued with the same policy, then we wouldn’t be in a better situation,”
“This isn’t a particularly personal thing of Darragh O’Brien - just like all his predecessors - Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, he’s committed to a certain model; he’s committed to representing the interests of big developers and the big landlords.”
In July, Sinn Féin tabled a vote of no confidence in the Government following the resignation of Joe McHugh TD from Fine Gael and the party has said it will support next week's motion of no confidence as well.
July's vote was 85 to 65 in favour of the coalition and the Government will be hoping it can rally similar support behind Mr O’Brien.
In a statement to Newstalk, Fianna Fáil said:
“The motion next week is another example of a party playing politics with housing.
"It’s the same cynical game-playing we see when time after time the same representatives oppose supply and affordability measures brought forward by the Government and when they oppose new housing developments in their areas.
"The fact is the overall housing delivery target of 24,600 new homes will be exceeded this year; the first affordable purchase homes in more than a decade will be delivered this year; hundreds of cost rental tenants are now in safe and secure long-term rental homes which didn’t exist a little over a year ago; the biggest overhaul of planning legislation in twenty years will be brought to Cabinet on Tuesday.
"The Minister has consistently acknowledged that not everyone is feeling this progress yet, and that it will take time, but progress is being made. The motion is simply opposition for opposition sake.”
Main image: Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage Darragh O'Brien arrives at Dublin Castle for a cabinet meeting.