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Monday 19 March 2018

Bertie brings his brolly as Brian brings up the rear

Fionnan Sheahan

Fionnan Sheahan

HE'S not predicting De Dub-ble just yet, but Bertie Ahern was sporting the colour of the Boys in Blue when the skies went grey over the Park yesterday.

The former Taoiseach pulled the Dublin golf umbrella from the back of his Ford Mondeo as the heavens opened when he parked at Aras an Uachtarain.

Gone are the days when he was chauffeured around – the Government did away with the perk on coming to office after the 2011 general election.

Walking the 100 yards up the driveway to the Aras for the Council of State meeting, the former Fianna Fail leader looked fit and healthy.

The consummate Dubs football fan, his thoughts were on the hurling following Kilkenny's dramatic exit the day before, with Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Clare left in the hunt for Liam McCarthy.

"Ah, it's a great championship this year."


Whatever about the criticism of the presence of certain former Taoisigh on the Council of State, he was there to do his duty and advise President Michael D Higgins.

Given the familiarity of the current crop, the curiosity on such occasions always surrounds the appearance of former leaders.

Former Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave, now 93, hopped unaided from his car to give a big smile to the cameras.

One by one the members of the council made their way into the Aras for the meeting.

Word of the absence of Mary Robinson, John Bruton and Albert Reynolds circulated.

But there was a lull in activity as one particular member was noticeable by his absence and time crept on.

Round the bend came the OPW Aras an Uachtarain minibus. Out of the passenger door of the Ford Transit pulling up emerged former Taoiseach Brian Cowen.

Not quite arriving in style.

Irish Independent

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