As you know, we where at the World Championship in Sweden and from there, brought some interesting interviews, as with thes best IHF World female player of the Year 2010, Romanian youngstart, Cristina Neagu (22). Let’s read how she reacted on the biggest prize in the handball world:– This is just wonderful, the biggest moment of my career. I hope that I won’t stop with this. All time of this world is in front of me. I am looking forward to my future. Hopefully, I will keep to grow as a player.At the court, you are looking as a Lion and Princess in the same time?– It is true (laugh). When I am on the court, I don’t think about injuries, to break nail or neck. I just want to win every game in that 60 minutes. I know that I am like a Lion. I love that. Handball is my life…With a national team, you won bronze medal at the EHF EURO 2010 in Norway and Denmark. Obviously weren’t so easy to compete with three Scandinavians NT in the final stage?– It was so difficult. We played against Denmark in the Main Round and they weren’t hospitable to us. We managed to beat them for the bronze. It was really tough game. Result 16:15 talking about everything. That is my first medal and I won’t stop. I hope that this is just beginning…You made a huge step in the promotion of handball in Romania…– Handball is popular, but nothing like a football. We have to do more. This prize is a result of that popularity, which grew up, when we won a medal. People were in front of TV, supported us, etc. That is why I don’t understand, why is football so popular, when they don’t have results…That is a global question. It was a rumour that you want to leave Oltchim and move to Viborg?– I signed a new contract with a team. I will stay in Valcea two more years. My biggest New Year’s wish was to win the EHF Champions League with Oltchim. I have a great individual prizes and this bronze, but bronze isn’t a gold. As I told you, I am at the beginning. I have all the time of this World to win everything in handball. Hopefully, God will be with us…Can you imagine, that you are a coach, who has to make a “dream team”. Who will be in (Romanian players are excluded)?– Very diffucult task. I am on the left back, of course (laugh). I would like young players in my team. Andrea Lekić would be at playmaker position. Right back and left wing, Danes, Camila Dalby and Mia Augustesen. On the right wing, Norwegian, Nora Mork. Sorry, but I can’t remember all the players in the moment. For goalkeepers and line players, some youngstar. Actually, I don’t know any youngstar. Do you know? – ask Cristina journalist of Planet-Handball.com and finished – They are all experienced and in the best ages. I told you that this is to tough task. One day, when I become a coach, I will tell you…ŽIKA BOGDANOVIĆ ← Previous Story Ruben Schelbert from next season in Schaffhausen Next Story → Henrik Toft Hansen in AG Copenhagen Cristina NeaguIHF best handball players
← Previous Story Bundesliga (Round 21): RNL “step back draw” with Wetzlar! Next Story → WC 2011 TOP 10 LOSERS: “IHF’s website, Brandt, Wenta, Goluža…” The Women’s European Cup competitions have reached the Quarterfinal stage. The draw on 15 February 2011 in the EHF Headquarters, Vienna, gave us the following fixtures:Challenge CupMuratpasa Belediyesi SK (TUR) vs. “Spartak” Kiev (UKR)COMITEL Vigasio (ITA) vs. Handball Cercle Nimes (FRA)Mios Biganos (FRA) vs. HC Zito Prilep (MKD)HandbalAcademie (NED) vs. Sokol Pisek (CZE)Cup Winners’ CupLugi (SWE) vs. HSG Blomberg-Lippe (GER)C.B. Mar Alicante (ESP) vs. Rostov-Don (RUS)Toulon Saint Cyr Var Handball (FRA) vs. FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria (HUN)Zvezda (RUS) vs. Metz Handball (FRA)EHF CupTeam Tvis Holstebro (DEN) vs. SYMA-Vac (HUN)Team Esbjerg (DEN) vs. FC Midtjylland Handball (DEN)BM. Mar Sagunto (ESP) vs. Lada (RUS)KIF Vejen (DEN) vs. VfL Oldenburg (GER)The first leg matches will be carried out on 12/13 March 2011, the second leg games follow one week later, on 19/20 March 2011. The semi-finals will be drawn on 22 March 2011.TEXT: EHF
New Women’s NT coach in Serbia, Sasa Boskovic, better atmosphere and two easy wins at the start of EURO 2012 qualification, weren’t enough for some young – talented players, who decided to change national T-shirts. At Monday, Serbia began November’s preparation in Kladovo, city close to the border with Romania and city of Severin, where will “Carpatia Cup” take place next weekend with Romania, Hungary, Macedonia and Serbia as competitors.Preparation started without two “silver U17 girls” from WCh in Slovakia – 2008, right wing, Zeljka Nikolic (decided to play for Montenegro) and right back, Jelena Zivkovic. Nikolic is already in Podgorica, where she is a member of Buducnost Podgorica from 2010 (most of the time in Biseri – Pljevlja on loan). She had four appearances for Serbian NT, but club’s influence, as in cases of Katarina Bulatovic, Mirjana Milenkovic, Ana Djokic and other Serbian players, who decided to play for Montenegro, was something special.Destiny of the second player, one of the best lefthanded players in her age, Jelena Zivkovic (1991) from Hungarian FTC is much more interesting. She was unsatisfied with her status in Serbian NT, even she had chance to play at EHF EURO 2010 in Denmark and Norway where Serbia won 14th place. Zivkovic was the member of Serbian squad in WCh Qualification clashes against Croatia last June, which Serbia easily lost. She was part of the squad for two games at the beginning of EURO 2012 qualification against Greece and Portugal, but not on the bench. That was obviosly the reason, why she doesn’t come to Kladovo and stayed offline for calls from Serbia.Serbian Media have already speculation about her future. Unofficial informations are saying that she is close to agreement with Hungarian Federation, country, where she played from the last summer (FTC Budapest). On the other side, some sources speaking about his future in Montenegro as that become routine for women’s handball in former Yugoslavia…With three years break, she will be ready for a new NT challenge in 2014… ← Previous Story VELUX EHF FINAL4 stays in Cologne until 2014 Next Story → Csaba Konkoly sacked – Gyori looking for a new coach
← Previous Story Ivano Balic after Spain: “We played against Spaniards and the referees – Idiots” Next Story → The End of the French domination, Onesta: “See you in London!” In front of 15-16000 spectators, Serbia wins against Sweden 24:21 in the last match of Day 2 at the EHF EURO 2012 and as the first team qualified for the Final Weekend in the magnificent “Belgrade Arena”.After Round 2, still four teams have chance to reach Semifinal in the last Round.Macedonia – Poland 27:25Denmark – Germany 28:26STANDINGS:Serbia 7Germany 5Denmark 4Poland 3Macedonia 3Sweden 2
baliccervarmeshkovmetalurg Rumours have went out few days ago regarding a possible transfer of Ivano Balic to Macedonian champion Metalurg. However, unnamed sources have spoken that such transfer is impossible, especially since Ivano Balic does not want to play in Metalurg and is not in great personal relationship with Lino Cerver, sources say. On the other hand, Brest Meshkov have had their say. According to the club, money would not be a problem when hiring Ivano Balic, but the problem was that the club is not playing in the Champions League this season.source: vecernji.hr ← Previous Story Kim Andersson joining HSV Hamburg? Next Story → HSV Hamburg signing Fredrik Peterssen?
Joachim BoldsenKIF Kolding One of the best Danish players in the new century, Joachim Boldsen has announced the end of proffesional career at the end of the season 2013/2014. With 186 appearances for the national team, Boldsen was an important part of the squad who won the European gold at EHF EURO 2008 in Norway. In addition, he won with Denmark bronze in 2002, 2004 and 2006, same at World Championships in 2007.At club level, Joachim Boldsen played for some of the biggest clubs in Europe and was one of the best players of SG Flensburg in 2004, when club won the first German title in the history. Danish playmaker also played at FC Barcelona. In Denmark he played for Helsingør IF, GOG , AaB , AG Copenhagen and KIF Kolding Copenhagen . ← Previous Story NINE MINUTES WERE ENOUGH: Kiel beat RNL! Next Story → BUNDESLIGA DEBUT: Rambo scored two goals for GWD Minden
danish champinKIF Kolding KIF Kolding Kobenhavn are the new Danish champions! EHF CL TOP 16 team beat took revenge over Aalborg for the last year defeat in the final clashes! Hvidt and C.o won both matches…KIF Kolding København – Aalborg Håndbold: 19-17(12-11)KIF: Albert Rocas 5, Lukas Karlsson 5, Lasse Andersson 3, Stefan Hundstrup 3, Cyril Viudes 2, Torsten Laen 1,Aalborg: Håvard Tvedten 4, Jacob Bagersted 4, Johan Jakobsson 4, Mads Mensah Larsen 3, Niclas Barud 2KIF were better in the first match – 23:18… ← Previous Story CHALLENGE CUP FINAL DELAY: Metaloplastika players defending the city Next Story → Polish League became boring
ASOBALbalonmanola riojaNaturhouse La Riojapablo cacheda Apart from the stars that La Rioja signed so far, they’ve also presented another signing – the young and hot prospect – Pablo Cacheda. Pablo Cacheda joined BM Valladolid last season and was touted as one of the main players for the past season, but the player got injured and had to be away from the court for seven months. He returned before the end of the season, only to see his club relegate, and as of recently disappear due to financial problems. He is happy at the possibility of playing in the Champions League, and hopes to regain his high level of handball he had before his injury. ← Previous Story Rafa Baena moves to Puente Genil Next Story → Momir Ilic is best Serbian and Ex-Yu player of the Year!
German city of Frankfurt was the place of meeting of the Croatian Handball Federation leaders with legendary national player Ivano Balic. Current playmaker of HSG Wetzlar decided to decline extension of contract with DKB Bundesliga team and to ended his career next summer, when he will take the new handball responsibility as coordinator of men’s handball in Croatia:– We agreed that Ivano overtake that position. Our visions about some future appointment in the men’s national teams are almost equal – said CHF president Sandi Sola.Croatia is currently without NT head-coach since Slavko Goluza resigned last week. The first pick for the new leader of national team is Zvonimir Noka Serdarusic, who has also offer to overtake PSG Handball. His assistant in the Croatian NT could be another legendary player from Balic’s era, Petar Metlicic. ← Previous Story Jakobsen and Rhein Neckar Lowen – together until 2017 Next Story → Baltic Handball League: SKA and Serviti secured places in Final Four Ivano Balic
← Previous Story Pots for Men’s EHF EURO 2018: Denmark in Pot 2, Norway host in Porec Next Story → Positive debuts for Uruguay and Puerto Rico The seventh summer for goalkeepers all around the globe linked with International Handball Goalkeepers’ Camp in Omis, Croatia, will start in less than two weeks. Beautiful summer’s resort Galeb will host the event, which became world famous by its quality and TOP names in goalkeeping world which attending Camp every summer.Organizers led by Camp chairman Mario Caljkusic announced that Camp is sold-out with more than 200 participants. Young boys and girls will have chance to work with famous names like Roland Mikler, Mirko Alilovic, Marin Sego, Filip Ivic, Benjamin Buric, Borko Ristovski, but also some well-known coaches specialized in work with goalkeepers like Haris Porobic, Mirko Basic, etc…GOALKEEPERS FACEBOOK PAGE
10 things in tech you need to know today Contaminated tap water could lead to 100,000 cases of cancer in the US if people drink it their whole lives. Here’s how worried you should be. Trump carries a wad of cash for tipping people in his back pocket instead of a wallet David Cameron suggests he persuaded the Queen to warn against Scottish independence APPLE HAS MADE its new iOS 7 software available today.It is a drastic change in interface from iOS6, but change is not necessarily a bad thing.If you’re thinking about making the switch, here’s what you need to do:Make Sure You Have A Compatible DeviceiOS 7 will only work on iPhones that are iPhone 4 or later, Retina display iPads, iPad 2, and the fifth-generation iPod touch.Carve Out Some TimeHistorically, Apple makes its software available around 6pm (Irish time) on the release day. When lots of people download it at the same time, it crowds Apple’s servers. If you can wait, try downloading iOS7 in a few days. If you’re impatient, be prepared for a sluggish download.Update iTunesIf you back up your iPhone or iPad to iTunes, or if you plan to install iOS7 from iTunes, make sure you are running the latest version (11.1).You can check by opening iTunes and going to Help > Check for Updates. Make sure you restart iTunes after installing the latest version.Back Up Your DeviceBack up your device to iTunes. This is extremely important as it will let you keep your contacts, photos, and apps from the previous iOS.You can also back it up to iCloud. Go to Settings > iCloud > Storage & Backup. Under Backup, turn on the switch for iCloud Backup.Update iOS When iOS 7 becomes available, you can update with a good Wi-Fi connection by going into your settings and grabbing the software update. This is an easy way to do it if you’re on the go.You can also use iTunes to upgrade your software.Plug your device into your computer with the USB cord and launch iTunes. On the left side of iTunes, find and select your device. Click “Check for Update” which will appear automatically. When the dialogue box appears, select “Download and Update”.WaitBe patient as you wait for the download. If you interrupt the process you could risk disrupting the update.Read: Apple to launch two new phones later this yearToday: Here’s why TDs and Senators can’t update their iPhones and iPads to iOS7
HOSPITAL DOCTORS SAY industrial action remains a possibility as talks continue between the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) and the Health Service Executive (HSE).The two groups met at the Labour Relations Commission today but the union says that while some progress was made, there remains a number of unresolved issues.The HSE says it will revert to the IMO tomorrow with proposals to address concerns.In a statement, the union said that a strike remains a possibility and the matter will be discussed by the NCHD committee when it reconvenes to consider the HSE proposals.Junior doctors agreed to postpone the planned strike so discussions could continue on how to end shifts that last longer than 24 hours.The IMO claims its members are working illegal hours, urging the HSE to come up with a plan to implement an EU directive on working hours by the end of next year.Earlier today, Minister James Reilly said he was keen to resolve the issue, noting the wanted to see Irish doctors have a life, a career and a hobby.Read: Doctors’ strike now suspended indefinitely as IMO seeks clarificationEarlier: Minister does not want legal firms to benefit from symphysiotomy settlement
O’Connor said that the banking sector in Ireland had a “pathetic” track record in lending to productive enterprises and called the 2003 privatisation of both ACC and ICC a “disaster”.“[The banking industry] was more interested in gambling and speculating in property during the boom years and it has not proven itself any more capable of supporting productive business in the post-boom period.“ACC and ICC had proven track records of supporting Irish agriculture and industry over several decades. Our recovery is intrinsically linked to our ability to increase economic sovereignty. We need as a country to begin taking back control of our economy. A huge step forward in this direction would be the creation of a State Investment Bank focused entirely on supporting domestic enterprise.”O’Connor’s colleague Adrian Kane said that the laid-off workers could be employed in the state investment bank.Read: Danske Bank Ireland to close for personal customers with loss of 150 jobsRead: Ulster Bank assets to be transferred to RBS ‘bad bank’ THE DECISION BY Rabobank to hand back the banking licence for ACC Bank represents an opportunity for a state investment bank network.That is the opinion of SIPTU leader Jack O’Connor, who said that the branch network of ACC could be used to establish the state’s investment arm.“The creation of the strategic investment fund by the Government is welcome but this can only be seen as a first step to creating the financial infrastructure necessary to support Irish industry.The decision by Rabobank to hand back the ACC banking licence provides a real opportunity to marry the strategic investment fund with the ACC banking network in order to establish a badly needed State Investment Bank.
“I don’t think he has any interest in his portfolio. He has been too dismissive towards genuine concerns that are founded in fact and research.”Whelan said he would like to see Rabbitte replaced in any Cabinet reshuffle and said the appointment of O’Connor should be reconsidered by the Minister.‘Slipping in innuendo’He also called on O’Connor to reconsider taking the job, while acknowledging that he is “a man of utmost integrity and skills for position”.“But that is not the issue,” Whelan said. “This is not about the personality it’s about the policy conflict.”O’Connor has already denied any conflict of interest in his appointment, telling the Irish Times on Wednesday that he has no involvement with An Bord Pleanála now.Meanwhile speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland yesterday Rabbitte accused those criticising the appointment of “slipping in innuendo”.“It’s a monstrous allegation that is unworthy of those making it. The man left the place two years ago, he has a distinguished record in a number of areas,” he insisted, adding O’Connor’s “probity is not in doubt”.Whelan said that the Eurogrid project is being progressed in order to cope with the increasing number of wind farms being built in Ireland, and accused the Minister of ignoring other renewable energy sources.“There is a preference in the corridors of power for wind energy and that’s why grid capacity is being expanded, not to cope with any supply and demand issue,” Whelan claimed.Describing the appointment as a “gross error of judgement”, the Laois-based senator said that the government should consider putting large electricity cables underground, as is the case in Denmark.The government has argued that this would be three times as expensive as overhead pylons and voted down a Dáil motion, tabled by Senator Rónán Mullen, to place the cabling underground on Wednesday.Whelan was among three Labour senators to abstain on the vote which passed by just 26 votes to 25.Rabbitte: ‘I want Eirgrid to do everything it can to secure community acceptance’Read: Electricity project to be scrutinised at An Bord Pleanála hearingsWATCH: Mattie McGrath tells Rabbitte to ‘count the tits on Mrs Murphy’s cow’ A LABOUR SENATOR has said that he has “no confidence” in the Communications Minister Pat Rabbitte following the appointment of the former head of An Bord Pleanála as the chairman of Eirgrid.John Whelan’s criticism of Rabbitte follows the appointment of John O’Connor, two years after he left the planning board which is now considering objections to Eirgrid’s countrywide EuroGrid 25 project, which aims to update Ireland’s electricity infrastructure.Part of the EuroGrid project in the Laois-Kilkenny area, which includes the installation of over a dozen high-powered eletricity pylons, has been the subject of an An Bord Pleanála public hearing which concludes today.The project is being vehemently opposed by some residents, who question the need for the cabling and argue it could be placed underground.Whelan said that the appointment of O’Connor as the new chairman of Eirgrid “displays an astonishing level of arrogance and detachment and a lack of awareness of the profound, serious and genuine concerns” that are held by people about the Eurogrid project.He stopped short of calling for his Labour colleague Rabbitte to resign, but told TheJournal.ie: “I’ve no confidence in how he is handling his brief.
NEWBORN BABIES ARE always faced with a variety of camera lenses in their faces after their birth, but one baby born this week had her own paparazzi-style welcome to the world.Leona Lambe was born on Friday at Mount Carmel Private Hospital, being the last baby born there due to the fact it has gone into liquidation.As the last baby born there, she got this reception when she made an appearance with her parents Martina and Thomas:Staff at Mount Carmel were informed last week that about 200 of them were to finish by the end of Thursday 30 January, with the remainder – over 100 staff- to work for another week or two.Elective patients were also discharged last Thursday, while deliveries were rescheduled and some patients directed to the Coombe hospital.In total, 572 maternity patients were affected by the liquidation.Union SIPTU, which represents a large amount of the staff, has called for the liquidators to retain the hospital as a going concern.It has also asked the Department of Social Protection to fast-track Mount Carmel workers’ benefits because it is “unclear” when they will receive the redundancy payments owed to them.Last Friday, 10 workers staged a sit-in in protest against the closure of the hospital. A rally in support of Mount Carmel staff was held the next day.The staff described the protest as “just the start of the campaign”.Despite all the action around her, Leona Lambe was blissfully unaware of the significance of her birth at Mount Carmel.Martina and Thomas Lambe with baby Leona. Pics: Sasko LazarovRead: ‘A hospital is not just bricks and mortar’ – staff determined to save Mount Carmel>Read: Mount Carmel workers ‘staging sit-in’ over hospital closure>
A MAN WITH two suspicious bags attempted to climb a White House fence before being apprehended, leading to a security lockdown of the White House grounds.A Secret Service spokesman said the man was taken into custody and his bags were being screened.“He did not make it over the fence,” a U.S. Secret Service spokesman said.The area around the White House was shut down and reporters were not allowed to leave through one of the gates because of the incident.President Barack Obama was travelling in Michigan at the time.(Reporting by Steve Holland and Jeff Mason; Editing by Eric Beech)Copyright 2014 Thomson Reuters/ Click for Restrictions.Read: A “year of action”: Obama sends warning to Congress, pledges to tackle inequality
THE RELEASE OF the former Pussy Riot members in Russia, their continued defiance of the regime and their recent meeting with Sinead O’Connor prompts a more local question. This is the lack of any serious radical political or cultural response to the current crisis in Ireland.We have put up with measures that as the late Brian Lenihan said would have led to revolution and rioting in other countries. – yet, the reaction here has been largely one of complacency disturbed by occasional and transitory anger at some of its excesses. Despite what has happened there is little compelling evidence of a sustained appetite for change. So why is this the case?There are many factors involved, including the nature of politics and the capacity of important groups to protect themselves from the effects of austerity. But we need to look beyond these and to interrogate the way in which culture and the arts has become a cloak for social cultural and political complacency and has an important role in reproducing this complacency. Culture and the arts should have an energising and critical function in society, particularly one in crisis. But in Ireland they have become comfort blankets for the middle class.Two influential artistsWe can see this in the treatment of the work of two artists. One is the late Seamus Heaney. The role of the poet, like that of all artists and intellectuals, is to challenge the self images of the age but the way in which his work has been taken up by audiences has prevented this happening. He has become the Patience Strong of Irish life.His work is now in the cultural limbo where it is no threat to anyone. He has become the poet of consolation, a function previously served by prayer books. A reading from his poems has become a required feature of births, marriages and deaths. This explains the ease with which his work has been effortlessly co-opted by politicians and possible war criminals.This is best illustrated in his lines written for Amnesty International and now routinely used by many of the kinds of people that one assumes Amnesty oppose. These lines refer to the rhyming of hope and history, intended to summarise the hope that we are nearing the end of conflict and looking to the possibility that more peaceful futures may be emerging.These have been trotted out by Barrack Obama but the fact that the drone attacks, ordered and approved by him, mainly kill innocent civilians seemed to get lost in memorialising Heaney. These attacks have played an active role in ensuring that in countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan hope and history do not rhyme. There hasn’t been much protest from admirers of Heaney’s work in Ireland at this abuse, either of the poem or the drone attacks. There may even be a secret pleasure at the fact that an American President quotes an Irish poet. He doesn’t quote too many American ones. Neither Obama, nor Clinton for that matter, were particularly vocal over the death of Alan Ginsberg.Shouldn’t we bit afraid?The other artist and poem whose work has been co-opted in the culture of complacency is Leonard Cohen, through he may be a more willing collaborator than Seamus Heaney. There can be few people of a certain age and income who during the latest recession haven’t been to at least one Cohen concert. He consistently draws crowds and elicits responses here that are exceptional in a European and American context. There are no other countries where he has played four or five concerts in a row. He will give you the old guff about Yeats and all of that but the main reason he comes here so much is because of the public demand for his shows. We love the guy and Ireland has become a cash cow for his retirement fund.But look at the kind of songs he now performs. They are often funny, romantic and masterful but they do not disturb in any way. Where is the existential doubt and the inner anger that energised and drove his music on albums like Songs of Love and Hate. Anger was the source of much of his best music but there was little evidence of this in his concerts now. What we were offered instead is the notion that “there is a crack, a crack, in everything, that’s how the lights gets in”. This might be consoling for some but in the long dark night of recession perhaps we need something stronger and more illuminating. Contemporary Ireland is a tissue of cracks and a lot of darkness. Most of the light is apparently at the end of tunnels. But then it was probably too much to expect revolutionary talk from a man and a band dressed in Armani suits.It may be very well that artists have become consumable products as they make a few bob out of it. But there is a price. It is right that we venerate and respect our writers and artists. But shouldn’t we also be a bit afraid of them as well?Dr Ciaran McCullagh was a senior lecturer in Sociology in University College Cork until his retirement in 2012. He is the author of two books, Crime in Ireland and The Sociology of Media Power. He is currently revising the crime book to incorporate developments since the first edition. A full list of his publications can be found here. Column: Why Exchange Dublin desperately needs your supportWatch: Panti’s powerful speech about oppression of gay people
THE PEOPLE BEFORE Profit TD Joan Collins has admitted that the controversy surrounding Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan’s penalty points has impacted on the reputation of independent deputies in the Dáil.Flanagan has been mired in controversy for the past week after he admitted that he had two sets of penalty points wiped from his record including one set which were wiped after he wrote to gardaí claiming he was exempt under a rule regarding travelling on Dáil business.Flanagan had previously attempted to expose what he and three other TDs, including Collins, claimed was widespread quashing of penalty points from drivers’ licences with as many as 50,000 points wiped over a four-year period.“I think you have to accept it will have some impact,” Collins told TheJournal.ie yesterday when asked about the damage to the reputation of independent TDs this week’s revelations may have caused.This latest controversy follows the furore surrounding Mick Wallace’s under-declaration of VAT last year which caused him considerable embarrassment and led to calls for him to resign his Dáil seat. Flanagan has also faced calls to resign this week.Contrary to a report yesterday, Flanagan cannot be ejected from the Dáil Technical Group – the grouping of independent TDs for the purposes of speaking rights in the Dáil – and so far no attempts have been made to ostracise the Roscommon-South Leitrim deputy.Flanagan did not return a request for comment yesterday. ‘He apologised profusely’Collins said that Flanagan’s actions were “out of order” and “wrong” and said she was particularly disappointed given she had been one of the deputies who named some of the high-profile public figures alleged to have had penalty points wiped from their licences in the Dáil last year.“I put my neck on the line in trying to expose the situation,” she said.“He was wrong and I said it to him,” she said of her conversation with Flanagan this week. “He apologised profusely, he said he shouldn’t have done it, and that it shouldn’t happened. But that’s okay saying that after the fact.”Collins said it was the nature of the Technical Group that Flanagan could not be ejected from it as it was a grouping constituted purely for speaking rights in the Dáil chamber.“If Michael Lowry applied to come in we couldn’t stop him. That’s the nature of the beast, it was put together for speaking rights. That’s really what it is, so he can’t be ejected,” she said.The Dublin South-Central TD insisted that the issue of penalty points being wiped was still relevant and claimed that raising the issue has led to TDs being targeted in the media.“None of us are whiter than white, we’re all public figures now,” she said. “It’s a media trying to undermine those who are making a stand on issues. They’re trying to drag anything out but Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan did do that, you can’t make excuses for what he did.”Collins would not be drawn on whether Flanagan should resign from the Dáil or not.“I’m not going into that territory,” she added.Read: Junior minister says Ming’s behaviour is ‘despicable and hypocritical’Column: ‘Ming’ case demonstrates a profound misunderstanding of parliamentary privilegeMick Wallace: Ming should have accepted quashed penalty points
CONCERNS HAVE BEEN raised over leaked information that details a plan to remove Dublin’s ambulance service from Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) by 2015.It emerged yesterday that the plan, which was seen by the Irish Times, was drawn up before the announcement last month that the HSE and Dublin City Council was to review the capital’s ambulance service.ReviewNow SIPTU members in DFB have said they are “extremely concerned” at the proposal and the union has called for a fully independent review of the service. Here’s what the review will involve SIPTU Organiser, Brendan O’Brien, said that the emergence of this document raises concerns that the outcome of the review “has already been decided”.It strongly indicates that this review is merely to provide a fig leaf to the HSE and Dublin City Council in their apparent plans to remove this service from Dublin Fire Brigade.He said that SIPTU members are also concerned that there has only been one additional ambulance provided to the DFB ambulance fleet over the last 20 years, despite the increase in population.DFB SIPTU representative, Glen Ellis, said that DFB has been able to provide a level of service which is above the national average and compares favourably to best international standards, despite the holding up of ambulances at hospital accident and emergency units.This is achieved by the internationally recognised fire based Emergency Medical Service which is provided by DFB. DFB receives 7 per cent of the total National Ambulance Service budget despite having to respond to 40 per cent of all ambulance calls nationally. This is done through the provision of 12 DFB ambulances, supported by the Dublin Fire Service. The union wants the management of the HSE to concentrate on “providing the necessary resources for our colleagues in the National Ambulance Service” prior to placing a focus on the DFB.Read: Ambulance cover ‘needs to treble’ to boost response times>Read: Cost, quality and scale of ambulance services in Dublin to be reviewed>
I have also been informed that a farmer had to sell a dairy cow for the price of a dry cow because he needed to buy groceries for his family. This is how desperate some farmers have become.The chairman of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Andrew Doyle TD, yesterday called for “solidarity within the farming community”, and for “farmers to resist the temptation to profiteer from the unfortunate situation”.“Something must be done now and the procrastinating by the Minister must stop,” Ó Cuív said, adding that farmers had been “dramatically let down.”Read: ABP sells Silvercrest plant mired in horsemeat controversy > The Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney should “put his money where his mouth is” and make €10 million available to help combat the worsening fodder crisis, according to Fianna Fáil’s Éamon Ó Cuív.His call comes a day after Coveney announced that his department would attempt to fast-track payment to farmers to help them deal with a shortage of grass following the recent bad weather.Responding to the move, Ó Cuív said that these steps would “not help the most urgent cases.”“What is now needed is straight cash to assist farmers who cannot get credit and do not have enough money to feed their cattle,” the Fianna Fail spokesperson for agriculture said.Examples of how extreme this emergency has become are farmers paying up to €80 for a bale of silage, almost four times what you would normally pay.