Galway Pro-Choice have hit out at An Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s remarks to Praveen Halappaavar in the Dáil yesterday, saying that they were “insensitive” and an “abuse of parliament”.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the group said the “inappropriate nature” of Mr Kenny’s actions in directly addressing Mr Halappanavar “cannot be emphasised enough” and backed the widower’s choice to refuse to take part in a HSE enquiry into his wife Savita’s death.
Savita Halappanavar died of septacaemia at UHG last month after suffering a miscarriage. Mr Halappanavar has claimed that after it became obvious that the foetus would not survive, he and his wife requested a termination but were refused as the foetal heartbeat could still be detected and told that “Ireland is a Catholic country”.
“Praveen Halappanavar’s refusal to cooperate with the HSE inquiry is completely understandable. Like Galway Pro-Choice, he believes that only a fully independent public inquiry has the ability to objectively investigate this matter. Mr Kenny’s attempt to persuade Mr Halappanavar to cooperate with the HSE was a shameful abuse of his position,” said the Galway Pro-Choice spokesperson.
“How Mr Kenny believes that it is acceptable to comment in the Dáil on the actions of a bereaved husband is inconceivable. Praveen feels that his wife’s death was avoidable. Acting through his solicitor is the most reasonable and sensible course of action.”
The spokesperson continued to say that Mr Kenny’s actions seem “even more incredible” in light of the fact that Savita’s family have received “no personal apology or expression of condolences from any Government or HSE official”.
“The fact that the HSE are going ahead with the investigation without Mr Halappanavar’s consent is both impractical and yet another example of Government arrogance. Without Praveen’s co-operation, the inquiry team will not have adequate access to the evidence they require. Furthermore, the credibility of any findings will be completely undermined by the dismissal of Praveen’s serious objections.”