The ill-conceived electronic voting system imposed on us by the former Government has cost us, the taxpayers, €58 million, a loss a bankrupt country can do without.
Environment Minister Phil Hogan has decided to pull the plug on e-voting and have a fire sale of the 7,504 machines held in storage at warehouses all over the country.
A tender process is being prepared for international publication, which will detail the amount of memory and the software specifications in the machines in the hope some technology firm may be able to harvest some value from them before they are finally scrapped.
The e-voting saga has proved an expensive lesson for this country. The concept was not sought nor wanted by the electorate.
The unwanted units have been in storage since their purchase in 2002. One lease was signed for 15 years, the remainder for 10 to 15 years.
Fewer than 1,000 machines were used on a pilot basis in Meath, Dublin West and Dublin North in the 2002 general election.
But controversy over the lack of a paper trail of the votes cast threw a shadow over their effectiveness.
The Irish PR voting system has proved to be a unique aspect of local and general elections.
It generates huge interest among party followers and is often, through the tally system, a recruiting method of getting young people involved in politics.
The e-voting machines would have eliminated this exciting and novel 'sport' of electioneering.
Having the final result in a matter of minutes after the conclusion of voting would have been a cruel and heartless way of disposing of defeated candidates.
They deserve a run for their money, as do their families and supporters. The manual count allows those likely to lose out some time on which to come to terms with their situations, rather than being dismissed by the press of a button.
What an anti-climax it would have been had we e-voting at the recent general election when history was made when Enda Kenny headed the poll and was elected Taoiseach.
It would have all been over in a matter of minutes, depriving the politicians, party members, the press and the general public the excitement of the count and possibly a recount.
Thankfully, Minister Hogan is taking the initiative to confine electronic voting to the scrap heap.
It should never have been contemplated in the first place and now we have to
live with the €58 million loss.