Tuesday 22 May 2018

EU chief 'was right not to hire de Burca'

Fionnan Sheahan

Fionnan Sheahan

FORMER Green Party senator Deirdre de Burca's behaviour with the party shows that European Commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn was right not to hire her, government sources believe.

And the irony of the Greens wanting Fianna Fail to get them a position, after years of complaining about cronyism, was also noted.

The Green Party's leadership opened fire on the ex-senator at the weekend, accusing her of threatening the party if she did not get a job in Brussels.

According to members, Ms de Burca indicated she wanted a post in the new European Commissioner's cabinet.

Green Party deputy leader Mary White told her party's members that Ms de Burca's resignation was prompted by her not getting the job.

"It is a fact that Deirdre's behaviour was driven by her failure to secure a senior EU post in Brussels. It is less known that she threatened John Gormley and her colleagues that she would set out to damage the party if she did not get that job. I have found her behaviour to be deplorable," she wrote.

The timing of Ms de Burca's resignation would appear to back up the party's claim. Ms Geoghegan-Quinn was only officially appointed on Wednesday, when her cabinet was also announced.

And a government source said Ms de Burca's reaction would only have justified the decision not to appoint her to the post. "Geoghegan-Quinn just didn't want her. It's all about how you conduct yourself," the source said.


Another source said Ms de Burca had "some cheek" and there was an irony in the Green Party always giving out about cronyism and then wanting Taoiseach Brian Cowen to secure a post for her.

"The Greens came in on a mandate of getting rid of cronyism and she was depending on a nod and wink getting a job for her. There's no doubt the Taoiseach put her name forward," the source said.

Green Party senator Dan Boyle said Ms de Burca "has found herself very hurt and disappointed".

Mr Boyle said his former colleague did have ambitions in Europe, but it wasn't possible to secure the position for her.

The senator rejected Ms de Burca's criticism of the party's role in government.

Irish Independent

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