Kenny on Shatter: ‘He is not liked by judges, guards and lawyers’
Published 26/03/2014 | 13:11
Taoiseach Enda Kenny is standing by Justice Minister Alan Shatter, who he says is “not liked by the judiciary, gardai and legal profession.”
The Taoiseach rejected Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams’ call for the Justice Minister to resign.
“You are focusing on a head here. That is all you want,” he said.
Independent TD Stephen Donnelly called on Mr Shatter to “step back”.
Mr Donnelly said Mr Shatter “no longer commands the respect” of the groups of people he needs to engage with.
But Mr Kenny stood by Mr Shatter’s record in office.
“Minister Shatter is not liked by the judiciary, he is not liked by the legal profession, he is not liked by the gardai.
“But I tell you one thing: he’s got the courage to deal with the truth and to change it when necessary in the interests of our citizens and our country,” he said.
Mr Kenny said Mr Shatter had never been afraid to deal with what’s been “lying under a lot of carpets for a number of years”.
The Taoiseach said Mr Shatter will address the handling of Garda whistleblowers this afternoon.
Mr Kenny defended Mr Shatter’s record in his handling of the various controversies engulfing the gardai over recent months.
“My job as head of Government is to see that we do the right thing and I want to see that whistleblowers are protected,” he said.
The Taoiseach accepted Gardai did not do enough to engage with whistleblowers.
“The minister will deal with the issue of the whistleblowers when he speaks on the Garda Inspectorate report today,” he said.
The Taoiseach said Mr Shatter was “big enough to apologise to Deputy Wallace and say he was sorry”.