I see that Rena Donaghey, the councillor who left the most crucial meeting of the year in Donegal to do a bit of after hours teaching, is in the Inishowen Independent this morning claiming she was fooled into thinking that John Campbell the Independent councillor wouldn’t change his vote and that they had the numbers to defeat the budget.

If she was fooled then she was easy to fool. CraicOn had predicted last week that the most likely scenario was that he would change his vote. If it was that unpredictable how come we predicted it? Click here to read the prediction.

If we could see it why could someone at the centre of it all not be able to see it coming.

Not Democracy

She is claiming that the council not waiting till she got back and voting without her was not democracy. There is not a democracy in the world where you get a vote if you are not there. It was up to her and her party to make sure that she was there.

She claimed that she had no inkling that the meeting would go on all day. That’s hardly credible when he previous budget meeting had gone on into the wee small hours of the morning as had the one last year.

There was a midnight deadline for the meeting. So why did she think this meeting would definitely be over by 6:15pm? That’s incredible.

Be prepared is the scout’s motto.

Got Everything

John Campbell may have changed his vote but he didn’t change his mind. Fine Gale capitulated and gave him everything he wanted to get the budget passed. Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein knew what those proposals were beforehand and knew that if he got all of his proposals then he would change his vote. He made no secret of it.

For some reason they never though for a moment that Fine Gale would accept his proposals in their entirety. They were not prepared for that eventuality.

Where was the Whip?

Fianna Fail should have insisted that Rena was prepared to be there up to midnight. Rena should either have cancelled the class or got someone else to take it. The pupils would have understood given the importance of it.

It’s no good claiming that you have a 100% attendance record when you weren’t there on the most crucial moment of the year in Donegal.

It’s no good a goalkeeper claiming that he was concentrating for the whole of the rest of the match when he was looking away when the winning goal went in.

If you go missing during a crucial vote and you keep your job by going missing people are bound to ask questions.

And Rena has not given us any credible answers to those.

Fianna Fail

But waht were Fianna Fail doing? Why did they not insist that Rena should be there. She claims that she told them beforehand that she would have to leave?

Why did they not insist that she was there the whole time and that she should make arrangements for the class to be cancelled or a substitute found?

As they all kept their jobs because of Rena’s departure people are bound to ask questions – as they have been doing.

It has made Donegal not the fighters for proper accountable democracy as they had hoped but the laughing-stock of the nation – and not just this nation as I saw it on the BBC news website.

And they all kept their jobs at the end of it.

It’s incredible!

Just incredible!

We’ll see what the voters of Buncrana make of it in May.