Tuesday 17 January 2017

Kenny said report reeked of an 'obsession with power'

Published 25/01/2016 | 02:30

Enda Kenny with former minister Michael Lowry. Photo: Tom Burke
Enda Kenny with former minister Michael Lowry. Photo: Tom Burke

When the Moriarty Tribunal published its report in March 2011, the newly elected Taoiseach Enda Kenny said it reeked of "fanatical greed".

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He spoke of the damage done to Irish democracy by "a culture of 'thanks very much, big fella'" and of "obsessive attachment to power".

And he took aim at his former colleague Michael Lowry, who he said had been elected to "the highest forum in the land, on the basis of public trust".

Mr Kenny called on the former Communications Minister to explain himself to the House and "to do it forensically and willingly".

He said the Tipperary TD should not speak from "ego or from the 'position' he and others adopted from the outset of this Tribunal or from his sense of 'mandate'".

"I cannot imagine a mandate from Irish people - or true democrats anywhere - that would involve an order or desire or permission for the behaviour outlined in the report," Mr Kenny said.

"I would remind the House that before the Tribunal, in fact, when the first issue regarding Deputy Lowry's conduct arose, Fine Gael acted immediately to remove him, first from Government Office and then from the party itself," he said.

"We did so in keeping with our desire to maintain probity and standards in politics as befits the party that founded the State."

Irish Independent

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