SINN Fein councillor Séighin Ó Ceallaigh is calling on the Council to produce ‘magic money’ from the same pot that saw a statue erected to Terry Wogan in the city to honour Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan.
The City East representative, who is from O’Riordan’s native Ballybricken, had previously made calls for the local authority to reveal the source of the money used to build the statue for the late Terry Wogan, which was unveiled at Poorman’s Kilkee last June.
Ó Ceallaigh said “the same magic money that appeared to build the Terry Wogan statue must now re-appear to honour Dolores O’Riordan”.
“I have no problem with the statue to Terry Wogan, only the fact it doesn’t look like Terry Wogan. But what I do have a problem with is that councillors were shown no designs, and did not give approval for money to be spent on the statue. I have asked many times where the money came from, and nobody seems to want to answer that question,” he claimed.
“So, I have come to the conclusion that this is magic money. Sure it would hardly be the case that taxpayers’ money was used to build a statue that had no council approval, and had no accountability. So now that we have seen the untimely passing of such a worldwide inspiration from my own parish of Ballybricken, I think the magic money needs to appear again.”
Ó Ceallaigh takes the view that the Council must remember the Cranberries frontwoman; in the same way it has remembered other Limerick celebrities who have died.
“I am not saying whether it should be for a statue or for a concert or for a music festival, all I’m saying is that Dolores O’Riordan needs to be remembered by the council. I would appeal again for public accountability in terms of money spent, and would welcome any clarifications which may come in the near future.”
Responding to Cllr Ó Ceallaigh’s comments this week, a spokesman for the Council said: “As part of the actions to deliver the Limerick Cultural Strategy, a Public Art Policy for Limerick City and County Council is being developed. This policy will take on board the interrelationship between the artist and the artwork, the context (location – site, social, geographical aspects) and the public.
“There is a need to pursue a co-ordinated policy on public art that identifies and brings together the resources available with Limerick City and County Council to create a vision for a public art programme with the clear artistic aims and objectives and a clear commissioning process. All future public art will be developed in line with this policy.”
by Alan Jacques