Q: How many ministers does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: The reality is, and let us be perfectly clear about this, we all recognise the importance of lightbulbs and that is why we are even more determined to nearly meet our lightbulb target almost as soon as we get the report from the scoping committee advising on the structure of the expert group to be established under the chairmanship of retired Ms Justice Whoeversfree to examine expressions of interest from stakeholders in the chandelier pillar groups in partnership with incandescent civic society with a view to joining the Taoiseach and insignificant others at a big launch before lunch in Government Buildings in time for the one o’clock news.
So, how many ministers does it take to change a lightbulb?
None. You couldn’t let them anywhere near electrics.
No. A clever press adviser will do the job.
When Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton joined the Taoiseach at the Government’s latest Project 2040 launch in Merrion Street recently – the one about the ¤500 million Climate Action Fund, he announced the provision of ¤17.5 million for the retrofitting of public lighting.
All very laudable, but how does this relate to the man and woman back in the constituencies?
Former Indo reporter Niall O’Connor, who is now press adviser to Paul Kehoe, the Minister of State for Defence, was quick off the mark to see the potential for his boss.
Immediately after the announcement, bright spark O’Connor had his own lightbulb moment and he lobbed in a query to Bruton’s department.
And Kehoe was able to supply the Wexford media with a good news announcement: “New funding provided to Wexford county will see the upgrade of up to 12,000 public lights across Wexford.”
On foot of the Government’s plan to retrofit 326,000 public lights around the country, “Minister Kehoe said he understands around 12,000 lights will fall under this scheme in Wexford. Poor public lighting can cause people, particularly elderly people, to feel unsafe. This will provide a peace of mind to many communities and ensure that our streets are better lit.” 12,000. That’s a nice round figure.