'Top 10 earners? More chance of me winning Lotto' - Marty Whelan
Marty Whelan has said there is about as much chance of him winning the Lottery as making it into RTE's top ten earners.
Whelan was one of several RTE hosts to celebrate the Lotto turning 30 in Montrose last night.
He said had bought a Lotto ticket for the draw, declaring: "It's my way of getting into the Top 10. And the way things are going, it's the only way."
Asked why he thinks there is a gender pay gap at RTE, he said: "What can I say? It comes down to experience, it comes down to drawing power, I suppose.
"It comes down to a whole bunch of things. So it's not just black and white, it can't be ... you have to be very careful about what you compare."
Both the chairperson of the RTE board, Moya Doherty, and RTE Director General Dee Forbes declined to discuss the issue when asked.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for RTE said it had "no plans" to publish details of salaries beyond its top ten stars, despite growing political pressure.
The broadcaster has insisted it is prohibited by law from publishing a list of presenters being paid more than €100,000. And it also shot down calls for the salaries of its top ten highest paid stars to be published every year, arguing that the figures have "commercial sensitivity".
Communications minister Denis Naughten has said RTE should voluntarily publish salaries of presenters earning more than €100,000.
While Fianna Fail's Timmy Dooley said RTE should release its top ten highest-paid list every year to "take the mystery out of it".
However, an RTE spokesman said there were "no plans" to extend the published list of presenters beyond the top ten, adding that legislation prohibited releasing a list of those on more than €100,000 due to "privacy and data protection restrictions".
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar attended the Lotto celebrations.
Good causes benefited from €5bn in National Lottery funding over the past three decades, he said last night.
Approximately 30c of every euro generated by National Lottery sales goes towards projects in sport and recreation, health and welfare, national heritage, the arts, and the Irish language. That amounts to around half-a-million euros every day.