FF To Tackle Household Debt

The two-day Fianna Fail (FF) strategy meeting continues today with the party leader promising to address household debt.

In the new Dail term the party has said they will make a move on creating legislation and a statutory body that will renegotiate household debt for families who are overwhelmed by repayments.

The conference hosted by the party leader, Michael Martin, will also focus on job creation and various other economic issues facing Ireland.

In the opening address of the conference yesterday Mr Martin said Fianna Fail would "provide strong and credible opposition".

Mr Martin went on to slam the coalition saying it had come up with nothing new and was cynically implementing the Fianna Fail policies it had attacked in opposition.

He said: "There's only so much of this over-hyping and under-delivering that Fine Gael and Labour will be able to get away with. So far they are acting as if all they need to do is to recycle their election speeches and everything will be okay. It's wearing thin and will soon start to cause them a lot of trouble."

In his address Mr Martin said that the issue of mortgage debt forgiveness was particularly cynical, claiming Fine Gael had promised in the election to cut hundreds of repayments on houses bought before 2008.

Fianna Fail has however said it is in favour of mortgage debt forgiveness but only in individual cases and where a full evaluation has been carried out.

Meanwhile the party is looking at ways to change how it works after February's poor election performance.

It is understood that this means a change to a one-member one-vote, subscription fees and a possible ending of the 85-year cumann structure in Dublin.

Mr Martin added: "The basic principle is that we must empower our members."

The 'think-in' is taking place at Maldron Hotel in Tallaght, Dublin.

For similar stories see: Economy Top Of Agenda At FF Meeting

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