Campaign launched opposing scraping of the Seanad

A new campaign has been launched which claims it is short-sighted for the government to consider abolishing the Seanad rather than trying to reform it.

The independent group Democracy Matters says the Seanad should be maintained to keep checks and balances on activities in the Dail otherwise it would create a power grab by the lower house giving it too much control.

The government is expected to hold a referendum in the Autumn on whether to get rid of the Seanad and it's 60 senators with no option to vote on changing how it works.

A spokesperson from Democracy Matters - broadcaster Una Mullally - says the government should try and make the Seanad work better, rather than getting rid of it.

"Because of the political and economic turmoil in Ireland that we're all familiar with over the past few years, there's kind of been an often justified rush - an enthusiasm for dismantling structures that got us here in the first place" she said.

"The Seanad has been cited by those who wish to abolish it as an example of an institution that's not functioning".

"But the idea that you'd simply get rid of something that's not working before trying to make it better is completely ill conceived" she added.