Saturday 17 February 2018

Kerins formally serves PAC with papers

Ex-Rehab boss Angela Kerins
Ex-Rehab boss Angela Kerins
Daniel McConnell

Daniel McConnell

FORMER Rehab chief executive Angela Kerins formally served legal papers on the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), the Irish Independent has learnt.

The papers had been expected earlier in the week but arrived yesterday.

The serving of the papers is the latest move in Ms Kerins's action for damages against the PAC, which she has accused of engaging in a "witch-hunt" against her.

It has been confirmed that there was an "initial deficiency" with the papers but this was corrected a short time later.

The deficiency has been confirmed as a number of missing pages which were later submitted to Melissa English, the Oireachtas Parliamentary Legal Adviser.

While Ms Kerins's issue is with the PAC, the matter is under the jurisdiction of the Houses of the Oireachtas Commission and it is thought the case will be rigorously contested.

It is understood that much of the material is made up of newspaper and other media extracts, as well as transcripts of comments made in connection with Ms Kerins at committee meetings.

It is understood that Ms English has already compiled a position paper analysing the grounds under which the case is being taken by Ms Kerins.

Last Monday, Ms Kerins succeeded in an application to bring a judicial review against the committee.

Lawyers for the former Rehab boss claimed in the High Court that she had lost her €240,000 job, been hospitalised for 10 days and had her constitutional rights breached as a result of the actions of the committee.

She claims the committee acted outside its remit while questioning her last February and in comments made about her at a second meeting, which she did not attend, in April.

Ms Kerins, who stood down in April, claims "questioning was pursued in a hostile manner and in a manner which suggests (members of the committee) were engaged in a witch hunt".

She cited questions and comments made by PAC chairman John McGuinness and other committee members.

The matter will be back before the courts in November.

Irish Independent

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