The number of gardaí serving the Achill/Mulranny area has fallen once again following the closure of the Mulranny Garda Station. Garda Ronan O’Grady, who was stationed at Mulranny, has been redeployed to the Westport area.
Mulranny Garda Station closed on Friday, despite a vociferous community campaign to save it. Mulranny, along with Bellacorick, Glenisland and Tourmakeady stations, was earmarked for closure by the Minister for Justice last December as part of Government cost-saving measures. All four closed their doors on Friday.
It had been hoped that Garda Ronan O’Grady would remain in the Achill/Mulranny region but it is understood that he has been transferred to Newport Station, which serves the Westport area.
Speaking to The Mayo News, local councillor Micheál McNamara expressed his disappointment at the decision to send Gda O’Grady to Newport. He also argued that the cost-savings do not justify the station closure.
“In the last five years, the Achill garda region, which is a busy tourist area with many elderly persons, has gone from having two sergeants and five gardaí to now only one sergeant and three gardaí.
“The issue is down to the necessity to balance budgets, we are being told, but on close analysis, the savings involved in the closure of Mulranny Garda Station could be less than €100 per week.
“Rural regions have experienced many losses to essential services under the current government, and I hear nothing but the sound of silence from Government TDs in Mayo on this very serious issue,” he said.
Cllr McNamara said he plans to immediately contact both Minister Alan Shatter and the Superintendent expressing his concerns about the new arrangements and requesting an assurance that extra Garda will be made available to the Achill/Mulranny area.
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