July 15, 2009

Irish Drivers letter to all Northern MLA members

In response to numerous complaints from IDA members and the general public we recently wrote to all Northern Politicians outlining the unacceptable treatment of border motorists by Customs officers and members of the Gardai. Following on this from this senior members of the organisation have met with some of the politicians whose constituents have been victims of this harassment.

The following is a copy of the letter:

Irish Drivers Association:    To all members of the Northern Ireland assembly.

Dear Sir or Madam.

The Irish Drivers Association was set up in the 26 counties in order to protect and advance the voice of the Irish motorist. Of late we have been approached by citizens from the 6 Counties who seem to be encountering some trouble with Irish customs and Gardai when entering the 26 counties.  This would be people that would have holiday homes or places of business south of the border. We have had several complaints from 6 county residents about being harassed and intimidated  about their place of permanent residence. Most people have been told that they are liable to pay VRT/ CUSTOMS duty on their vehicles. In most cases they end up having their vehicle seized on the road side. We have garage owners that have given out courtesy cars to people in the south while their vehicle is been repaired north of the border having their vehicles seized. This problem now seems to be getting out of hand and we think that it might be time for some intervention on your behalf. As you are aware we are all Europeans and were guaranteed the freedom of movement under article 39 of the treaty of Rome.

The Irish government is collecting a prohibited tax under article 25 of the treaty of Rome, Which prohibits customs duties and taxes to the equivalent effect. VRT is a re-labelled customs duty which was introduced under the 1992 finance act in the 26 counties when the EU put pressure on our government that they had to drop customs duties on vehicles as they were taxing a product of another member state. As you will understand if  someone from the six counties buys their vehicle south of the border there is no such thing as customs duty/vrt to take that vehicle north of the border. So again you will understand it is impossible for citizens south of the border to purchase a vehicle north of the border as your product is carrying a customs duty as high as 36 %. By having this levy lifted from your vehicles not alone will you be helping your constituents but you will be boosting the car trade in NI and so boosting your local economy. Perhaps a letter to the relevant ministers like Brian Lenihan Minister for finance and our foreign affairs minister and the minister for justice and bring it to their attentions the level of harassment your constituents are under going when entering the south and also the interference with the single European market.

Thanking you for your time and hoping we can be of some help to each other.

John Doherty Donegal branch chairman.086 8789925

John  Lernihan President and founder.  087 2509123

Dave Russell Secretary.  087 2312250


Written by:

Filed Under: Dates / Events

Trackback URL: http://www.irishdrivers.org/dates-events/irish-drivers-letter-to-all-northern-mla-members/trackback/


  • Ryan Stewart

    April 14, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    Please have a look at a group – “VRT – It’s Illegal – Abolish it now” It’s on Facebook, and I’ve just started it tonight in response to the gestapo’s arrival in Inishowen, N.Donegal today. I know some of the people who’ve had their cars seized today – One of whom – whose car was subject to VRT of €700 (car OMSP 3479 – ros.ie) was fined €600 to release back to him, and still has to pay duty on it on top of that.

    Apart from that, the release fee is supposed to be 10% of the OMSP as determined by revenue – so he was fine twice the amount and charged with obstruction, with a fine up to €5000. He is diabetic, and was held from 1.45pm to 5pm, and kept from getting his medication leaving him very ill.

    It’s about time a stand was made. Please pass on to as many people as you can to get the group message out there.


  • Rose

    April 27, 2010 at 5:37 pm

    Enough is enough. It is time we all stood up this corruption and the elected members who allow it to happen. Let people be careful who they vote for!! Ban VRT now! Keep up the good work warrior Ryan.

Leave a reply

* means field is required.