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Wednesday 1 October 2014

Rehab turns down request from PAC for details of Flannery's pension pot

Shane Phelan Public Affairs Editor

Published 13/03/2014 | 02:30

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Frank Flannery. Photo: Collins
Frank Flannery. Photo: Collins

REHAB Group has refused a formal request from the Dail's spending watchdog to disclose the pension of its former chief executive, ex-Fine Gael strategist Frank Flannery.

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The charity indicated Mr Flannery (70) had not consented to its release, and without this it could not provide the information to the committee under the Data Protection Act.

In a letter to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Rehab said it had informed Mr Flannery that the committee was seeking details of his pension entitlements.

"Without the consent of the individual concerned, Rehab is precluded from providing information on Mr Flannery's pension to the committee or any other body," it said.

Mr Flannery retired as chief executive in 2006, having been the charity and commercial group's boss for 34 years.

He resigned from the Rehab board and as a Fine Gael election strategist earlier this week amid the growing controversy over his failure to attend a PAC hearing a fortnight ago and revelations he was paid to lobby the Government on behalf of Rehab.

The PAC had also requested the attendance of Rehab's remuneration committee, but they also failed to appear.

In the letter, Rehab said its chief executive Angela Kerins had discussed the committee's request with Mr Flannery but it had felt there were other people who were better placed to answer the questions.

Mr Flannery personally wrote to the committee yesterday, saying he would respond to the PAC if he gets "a direct invitation and knows what the agenda is".

SUBMISSION

He said that he had not received any communication directly from the PAC, despite numerous reports and broadcast interviews with members of the committee.

However, he did not indicate whether or not he would agree to appear before the committee.

In a Rehab submission to the PAC, it outlined how Mr Flannery had been involved in extensive lobbying activities for the group and its subsidiary companies.

"The nature of the work has varied, including contributions to the Rehab Group's international work, and particularly its membership and representation on two international bodies, the European Platform for Rehabilitation and Workability International," it said.

It emerged last weekend that Mr Flannery was paid for lobbying the Departments of Justice, Education and Social Protection. His company, Laragh Consulting, invoiced Rehab for €11,000 in 2011 and €66,000 in 2012.

Irish Independent

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