Sunday 17 December 2017

GOAL dispute: John O’Shea’s injunction lifted pending hearing

THE High Court has adjourned an action by John O'Shea, founder of humanitarian aid agency GOAL, over what he claims was a concerted effort to remove him from his post as CEO of the charity.

Mr Justice Roderick Murphy was told today that a temporary injunction obtained by Mr O'Shea last Tuesday could be vacated pending the hearing of his main action.

The temporary injunction had been in force until yesterday to allow GOAL respond.

Following talks today, Paul McGarry SC, for Mr O'Shea, said the discussions had proven fruitful insofar as the temporary injunction was concerned.

His application for a separate injunction pending the hearing of his full action against GOAL could be adjourned until next Thursday.

Mr McGarry said the temporary order could be vacated on the basis of a mutually acceptable arrangement between the parties.

In his application on Tuesday for an interim order, the court heard Mr O'Shea rejected complaints made by some GOAL staff against him, including complaints of behaviour resulting in a culture of "institutionalised bullying", as "false and concocted".

There appeared to be a "personality clash" between GOAL chairman Pat O'Mahony and Mr O'Shea who had been told not to attend a board meeting of the agency last week where a vote to suspend Mr O'Shea was defeated by six votes to five, the court was also told.

Mr O'Shea, who set up GOAL 35 years ago, feared an effort to suspend him might be made at a meeting of the GOAL board scheduled for Tuesday last, his counsel Paul McGarry SC said.

It was his view there was "concerted action" to remove him

The court granted an interim order, returnable today, restraining the taking of any steps at that Tuesday meeting to deal with Mr O'Shea's position.

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