News Irish News

Monday 18 December 2017

Ex-CRC boss faces PAC grilling 'in weeks'

Chair of the Public Accounts Committee John McGuinness. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Chair of the Public Accounts Committee John McGuinness. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

Niall O'Connor and Jerome Reilly

UNDER-fire former CRC boss Paul Kiely and the directors who signed off on his gold-plated pension package will face a public grilling "within weeks", according to the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

John McGuinness told the Irish Independent that Mr Kiely and the directors would be "put on notice" later this week about their committee appearance, after he holds discussions with the HSE about the whereabouts of crucial documents.

The Carlow-Kilkenny TD predicted that the hearing would take place in "four or five weeks" and warned that the committee would seek to avail of special powers which will allow them to compel the former board to attend if they refuse to do so.

His warning came as the HSE confirmed that it was still seeking a number of documents relating to Mr Kiely's pension deal.

The documents, which include a pension proposal presentation to the CRC board, are being urgently sought by the interim administrator at the clinic John Cregan.

The CRC scandal has been played out at the PAC where members last week heard about the eye-watering €742,000 that Mr Kiely walked away with.

He previously only admitted a pension pot of €200,000.

Several members of the PAC yesterday heaped the pressure on the board to agree to their request to attend the hearing.

Fine Gael TD for Wicklow, Simon Harris, said that the special CRC board meeting that sanctioned Mr Kiely's payoff was attended by just half the board. The meeting took place on March 25 last year in the CRC offices, and was attended by chairman Hamilton Goulding and board members Jim Nugent, Hassia Jameson, Ailbhe Rice-Jones and Martin Walsh.

It was reported yesterday that Mr Nugent is willing to attend the PAC hearing, as is Mr Goulding.

Four ex-board members, including former Fianna Fail chief whip Vincent Brady, were not present at the meeting.

Mr Harris said it was crucial that TDs were able to question the board and said he believed the PAC may have been "lied to" about the size of Mr Kiely's pension deal.

It is understood that Mr Kiely will offer to hand back a portion of his payoff prior to the PAC hearing.

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News