Monday 27 February 2017

Despite Kerins' protests, the PAC served public interest in exposing bad practices

Angela Kerins. Picture: Steve Humphreys
Angela Kerins. Picture: Steve Humphreys

AFTER months on the offensive, the Public Accounts Committee is now firmly on the back foot. And so, by extension, is the entire Oireachtas committee system, including the fledgling Banking Inquiry.

The High Court proceedings taken by former Rehab boss Angela Kerins; the clipping of the PAC's wings by the Committee for Procedures and Privileges in relation to compellability; and the disclosure of John McGuinness's meeting with Kerins ahead of her appearance before the Committee, have raised questions about the modus operandi of the public finances watchdog.

In the process, it has reignited the debate about the suitability of Oireachtas committees to carry out inquiries and investigations.

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