More than 16 months of turmoil and wrangling over pay packets of senior executives leaves top farmers' organisation in a state of crisis
Published 16/12/2015 | 02:30
August 11, 2014: The IFA's former chief economist Con Lucey resigns from his role as chairman of the newly formed audit committee in a letter outlining his concerns about the organisation's general secretary, Pat Smith, to IFA president Eddie Downey.
Thursday, Nov 4, 2015: Carlow chairman Derek Deane tells the national council he believes that Pat Smith is earning €300,000, excluding pension and car benefits. He calls for vote on revealing the pay details. The proposal is rejected.
Thursday, Nov 12: IFA president Eddie Downey says suggestions that Pat Smith's pay was more than €400,000 were "uncorroborated, unsubstantiated, and should be ignored".
Wednesday, Nov 18: Derek Deane goes on RTE radio claiming that Pat Smith's salary is actually more than €450,000 a year.
Thursday, Nov 19: Eddie Downey signs off on a €2m severance deal with Pat Smith in the Farm Centre, while Pat Smith resigns later that evening.
Friday, Nov 20: An meeting of IFA national executive hears details of Mr Smith's €535,000 pay package in 2013. Mr Downey says the package was "not sustainable and unacceptable. Accordingly, we have dealt with it".
Monday, Nov 23: Executive board meeting in the Farm Centre reveals that Eddie Downey's salary was €147,000, and that the president was "stepping back" to give Con Lucey time to resume his role in reviewing pay structures at the top of the lobby group.
Tuesday, Nov 24: Public realises that Eddie Downey's remuneration is closer to €200,000 when automatic directorships at Bord Bia and Teagasc are included.