Tuesday 27 September 2016

Under-fire Fine Gael general secretary Tom Curran has 'full support' of Taoiseach Enda Kenny

Published 05/01/2016 | 20:49

Tom Curran
Tom Curran

Under-fire Fine Gael general secretary Tom Curran has the full support of Taoiseach Enda Kenny, a spokesman has said.

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Mr Curran has come under pressure following Fine Gael’s botched attempt to remove Sligo Leitrim TD John Perry from the party’s election ticket.

Asked if Mr Kenny still has confidence in the Fine Gael general secretary, the Taoiseach’s Spokesman said: “Of course he does. Tom Curran works extremely hard on behalf of the party”.

“The case has been settled and John will run and hopefully be successful,” he added.

Fine Gael may have to fork out up to €500,000 after it settled a legal action with Mr Perry, who sought a High Court injunction to overturn the result of a pre-election selection convention which he lost.

Mr Perry claimed there were discrepancies around votes on the night of the convention and insisted he should be added to the ticket as Mr Kenny previously pledged that all sitting TDs could run in the general election.

Fine Gael defended the case insisting that, despite a few glitches on the night, the convention was as organised as could be expected.

However, the party settled the case after a letter Mr Curran wrote to Sligo Leitrim returning officer Darragh Kelly emerged during on the fifth day of the trial.

In the letter, Mr Curran said the organisation of the event was “chaotic” and plagued by a “catalogue” of mistakes, which “drained people’s competency in the returning officer”.

The letter was not disclosed as evidence under discovery to Mr Perry’s legal team before the hearings began and only emerged as the trial came to a close.

Fine Gael settled the case and added the TD to the ticket after the letter was submitted as evidence.

Fine Gael TDs are seeking answers over who gave the orders to challenge Mr Perry’s legal case.

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