The Commissioner for An Garda Siochana has said that a case needs to be made for the reopening of Garda stations in rural Ireland.

Garda Commissioner of Ireland, Drew Harris, was speaking to RTE’s Morning Ireland after his attendance at the Longford Joint Policing Committee Meeting which took place last night (Monday, November 5).

The meeting took place in Ballymahon, Co. Longford and was attended by members of the Gardai, politicians, business owners and concerned residents of the county.

Harris was asked if a case is made and if it stands up, could he see the case been strengthened for the reopening of rural Garda stations to which he responded: “Well the case would need to be made in the first place.

“We have a lot of estate in this organisation; we want to make sure we are using it to the maximum effect, but we want to look at alternatives.

“We want to look at alternatives such as surgeries out in villages, mobile police stations and alternative ways of providing visibility, reassurance and a local service.”

At the meeting, some locals expressed concerns that some members of the community don’t know their Gardai anymore and have never even met their local sergeant.

Harris said that he is determined to change this situation and that there is no reason why this should be the case.