Sunday 11 December 2016

TDs to give CPP go-ahead for defence against O'Brien action

Published 06/10/2015 | 02:30

Mr O'Brien is believed to be taking issue with the CPP's findings that Kildare TD Catherine Murphy did not abuse Dáil privilege when making allegations in the chamber earlier this year
Mr O'Brien is believed to be taking issue with the CPP's findings that Kildare TD Catherine Murphy did not abuse Dáil privilege when making allegations in the chamber earlier this year

TDs are today expected to ­approve a motion permitting the ­Oireachtas to defend legal action taken against a Dáil committee by Denis O'Brien.

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As part of Oireachtas rules, the Committee for Procedure and Privileges (CPP) must ­ secure Dáil approval to issue a defence in the case taken by the well-known businessman.

The motion is expected to be passed this afternoon without the need for a formal debate.

Mr O'Brien is believed to be ­taking issue with the CPP's ­findings that Kildare TD ­Catherine Murphy did not abuse Dáil ­privilege when ­making ­allegations in the ­chamber ­earlier this year.

During a two-hour ­meeting last week, CPP members were ­given a legal ­briefing ­surrounding the High Court ­action initiated by the ­billionaire.

Sources present at the ­meeting told the Irish ­Independent that members were instructed not to make any further comments about the court action.

However, Ms Murphy ­subsequently released a ­statement strongly defending her actions in the Dáil earlier this year.

"It is extremely disappointing that the National Parliament and elected representatives are ­having to obtain legal ­advice on foot of a threat to the ­constitutionally protected Parliamentary ­privilege which is a cornerstone of a healthy democracy," Ms Murphy said.

"I reject any accusation that I interfered with the ­legal ­process. At all times I carried out my job as a public ­representative in the public interest."

Irish Independent

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