Thursday 27 April 2017

Legal fight could cost ex-protege dearly, says Ahern

ine Kerr Political Correspondent

FORMER Taoiseach Bertie Ahern yesterday warned his ex-protege Ivor Callely that his legal battle could end up costing him dearly.

Mr Ahern said he would have "done things differently" than Mr Callely in recent weeks and said going down the legal route would cost the senator a lot of money.

"I don't believe in bringing these things to the law," said Mr Ahern.

"I would have been suing newspapers for years if I believed in going to the law but I never did. The amount of times I was told I could sue newspapers and get loads of money was about 10 every month but I never believed in going to the law."

Mr Ahern insisted the decision to make Ivor Callely a senator in 2007 was his alone.

The former Taoiseach said he discussed his nominations for the Seanad with Fianna Fail colleagues but the choice was his with no input from Fianna Fail or Brian Cowen.

Appointment

At the time it was speculated that Mr Cowen may have had a say on who should be appointed to the 12 available seats in the Seanad.

But Mr Ahern last night insisted Mr Callely's appointment was his decision. "I would have talked to my colleagues but it was my decision."

Mr Callely was one of the Taoiseach's nominees when he lost his seat in Dublin North Central at the last general election. "At the time, he was a candidate who had just been defeated. He did really well in that election. He was only barely beaten but lacked transfers in the end. He was a guy who had been a minister of state," Mr Ahern said.

Asked if he would seek a nomination for the Dublin Lord Mayor elections, Mr Ahern said he had no interest in the position. "I don't understand what they're trying to do, to be honest with you. It's a total non-job."

Irish Independent

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