O’Gorman ‘no issue’ taking on Integration Minister role in next government

O’gorman ‘No Issue’ Taking On Integration Minister Role In Next Government
Roderic O’Gorman flagged that he had not sought a move during the last government reshuffle. Photo: PA
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By Cillian Sherlock, PA

Roderic O’Gorman has said he would have “no issue” in holding onto his role as Minister of Integration in the next government.

Opposition politicians have claimed that Mr O’Gorman has been “isolated” from Cabinet colleagues while dealing with immigration issues in the high-profile role.


He holds a range of other responsibilities across the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth.



Asked if the portfolio was a priority for the Greens, leader Eamon Ryan said he was glad that his colleague held the department of portfolio, adding that the party had been “centre stage in this Government”.

Mr Ryan said: “It’s very challenging. You wouldn’t want to have such a huge task, but I’m very glad Roderic O’Gorman is in that seat and addressing all the aspects of that department.”

He added: “I would take it up tomorrow. You don’t walk away from hard tasks.”

Mr O’Gorman noted that he had not sought a move during the last government reshuffle and said: “You don’t go into politics, and particularly you don’t join the Green Party for an easy life.”


Irish Migration
Mr O’Gorman was speaking after more than 450 migrants were cleared from two makeshift camps in Dublin city centre (Brian Lawless/PA)

He added: “I would have no issue with taking on this role if – and there’s so many ifs there in terms of our ability to be in government next year.

“But I and my colleagues, if we are in the next government, whatever departments we’re in, we’ll bring great experience and demonstrated staying power.”


He was speaking after more than 450 migrants were cleared from two makeshift camps during separate operations in Dublin city centre and subsequently offered State-provided accommodation.

Mr O’Gorman also told reporters that the Government had a comprehensive accommodation strategy with a “number of strands”.

He said a short-term measure that would provide hundreds of beds was the conversion of unused office buildings into dormitory-style accommodation.

Irish Migration
Greens leader Eamon Ryan said the party had been ‘centre stage in this Government’ (Brian Lawless/PA)

Asked if he could foresee the measure adding to the frustrations of people unsatisfied with the Government’s housing delivery, he responded: “It is basic, basic levels of accommodation. There’s no luxury, these aren’t forever homes.”

He added: “This is emergency accommodation, these are not homes.”

Mr O’Gorman said a number of offers had already been received and that they could be delivered by autumn.

The department had also expressed an interest in offers for large institutional buildings which could be purchased, whether they were in turn-key condition or not.

Asked if he was frustrated with the Department of Justice, Mr O’Gorman said: “No, there is no frustration in our partner the Department of Justice – we work extremely closely.”

He added: “I feel Justice is doing everything that it can.”

Justice Minister Helen McEntee
Mr O’Gorman said that he and Justice Minister Helen McEntee, pictured, were ‘both trying to reform a system that wasn’t fit for purpose’ (Liam McBurney/PA)

Mr O’Gorman said he and Justice Minister Helen McEntee were “both trying to reform a system that wasn’t fit for purpose”.

The ministers were speaking at the party’s launch of its local election manifesto.

Mr Ryan said a “good” result would see the party electing a councillor in each constituency.

Pledges in the manifesto included deploying more compulsory purchase orders for vacant and derelict properties, annual “car-free days” in towns and villages to facilitate local festivals, and reducing speed limits to 30km/h in towns.

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