Joan Collins is proposing putting public ownership of water in the constitution.

A leading figure in the water charge protests says the government's using the current shortages to try and reintroduce the fees.

Independent TD Joan Collins has introduced legislation to the Dáil that proposes the public get a vote on putting public ownership of water in the constitution.

She believes domestic users are being scape-goated, when industry and agriculture are the biggest water users.

She claims Irish Water and the government are guilty of pushing an agenda, whenever the public water system runs into problems: 'They used it when we had the snow with pipes bursting. So every time something happens,the state and Irish water will say we have to pay for our water and put metres in. People will not accept that, they resisted it, and we will continue to do so'.