Cóir Date: 03.10.2009
Cóir claims a significant section of the population were bullied and misled into supporting the treaty.
Cóir has said that the passage of the Lisbon Treaty referendum is a win for the political elite but a very real loss for the Irish people who were “shamelessly bullied” into supporting the treaty. “As time passes, and the treaty comes into effect, it will be the ordinary people who will suffer as wages are cut, jobs are lost and the EU takes more power unto itself,” said Richard Greene of Cóir. “The Yes campaign was dirty, extremely well-funded and entirely based on fear and lies. This is a victory for bullies, and for those who did not respect the wishes of the people.” “It’s a grubby victory for the elite who spent enormous sums frightening and manipulating people,” said Mr Greene. And he urged the media to inquire as to the source of funding of the Yes campaign. “I very much hope the media are now going to pursue this issue and ask some hard questions,” he said. The Cóir spokesman had warm praise for the thousands of volunteers who ran the campaign for a No vote. “It was a case of David versus an army of Goliaths,” he said. “The Yes campaign had no volunteers, had no passion, but they had millions to spend.” Mr Greene added that a significant section of the electorate were unrepresented by any of the political parties and that Cóir would be holding some key meetings with its activists in the near future to look at providing a political alternative to those people.
Cóir Date: 02.10.2009
Cóir has said that the State has undermined the confidence the electorate can have in the referendum process by threatening citizens with arrest if they proceeded with plans to monitor the vote on the Lisbon Treaty.
“Today we were told by Dublin City Sheriff, Brendan Walsh, that he had asked the Gardaí to take action against any of our volunteers who sought information as to the number of votes cast in a polling station at the end of the day,” said Manus Mac Meanmain of Cóir. “To say we are shocked is an understatement,” he continued. “In conversation with Cóir, Mr Walsh confirmed that the information being requested by Cóir was compiled by the Presiding officer at each polling centre at the end of the day’s voting in any case.” “But now he has threatened any citizen who politely requests that information from the Presiding Officer with arrest! This is simply outrageous, and will shatter the faith citizens should be able to have in this referendum process.”
Cóir plans to monitor polling in the Lisbon Treaty referendum and the counting of votes to ensure the vote is fair, free and transparent.
“Our volunteers want some simple information: the number of ballot boxes in the polling station, and the number of votes cast in each ballot box at the end of polling,” said Mr Mac Meanmain.
“Requesting this information creates no undue pressure or additional work for the Presiding Officer in each polling station. Most importantly, it allows citizens to freely engage in the democratic process and ensures those same citizens can monitor the referendum and have faith in a democratic, free and fair vote.”Cóir pointed out that it was traditional for Presiding Officers in polling stations to give similar information to the media throughout the day, and at the close of the day. “We can see that in today’s reporting to date,” said Mr Mac Meanmain.
He said that the move by Dublin City Sheriff would create anger and suspicion amongst voters already alarmed that the requirement for equal airtime for Yes and No campaigners has been set aside, while the EU Commission was funding Yes propaganda.
“I would have previously said developments didn’t inspire confidence. Now, I would say the situation is downright alarming,” said Mr. Mac Meanmain. “Citizens should never have to seek the permission of the State to monitor the State. That’s not a democracy,” he concluded.