Sunday 25 August 2019

'Our taxes are paying for this' - anger as garda still stationed at late former Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave's home

The late Liam Cosgrave, pictured in 2014
The late Liam Cosgrave, pictured in 2014
Kathy Armstrong

Kathy Armstrong

A woman has questioned why a garda is still stationed at the home of former Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave more than a month after his death, saying: "Our taxes are paying for this."

The former Fine Gael leader passed away on October 4 in Tallaght Hospital following an illness.

A concerned member of the public has revealed that a garda has been stationed at the home Mr Cosgrave lived in in Knocklyon, Dublin with his late wife, Vera.

The woman, who was only identified as Sharon, said on Liveline on RTE Radio One: "I discovered there's a guard still at the gate of Liam Cosgrave's house, he's stationed in a hut at the gate of the house.

"I don't know who he's protecting but all of our taxes are paying for this and he's still there.

"My daughter has lived nearby for the last 12 years and I visit very regularly, there is always a garda presence at that house."

Mr Cosgrave led a Fine Gael-Labour coalition between 1973 and 1977, when he stepped down following Fianna Fail's landslide election victory.

Another Liveline listener, identified only as Sheila, was also angry that garda resources are still being used to protect Mr Cosgrave's home.

She said: "That guard has to sit there and they can't do anything about any other crimes as they have to stay at their station.

"It's a waste of revenue and it's a waste of resources, why can't they release that garda to go elsewhere and hire a security firm if they want?

"It's ridiculous and a total waste of taxpayers' money. What are they protecting, an empty bungalow?"

A garda spokesman confirmed to RTE: "There is still a 24/7 365 Garda presence outside the home of the late Liam Cosgrave who was Taoiseach in 1977."

A garda spokesman told "Following the death of a protected person, An Garda Síochána conducts a full security review and a determination on security requirements is made based on the outcome of that review.
"The review is undertaken in conjunction with the Department of Justice and the occupants of the property.

"This review has been completed and a determination reached."

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