Thursday 18 January 2018

Retiring commissioner will get €300k lump sum and €90k per year pension

Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan, left, and Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan, right.
Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan, left, and Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan, right.
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Former Garda Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan will retire with a lump sum of close to €300,000 and an annual pension of €90,000 as she steps down from her post.

As Commissioner Ms O'Sullivan was on a salary of €180,00 per year.

On her retirement she is entitled to 150pc of her final salary, capped at €300,000, as a lump sum, plus a basic pension of 50pc of her salary.

She is entitled to a full commissioner's salary after three years. Sources confirmed to the Irish Independent that Ms O'Sullivan's time as acting commissioner following the resignation of Martin Callinan in 2014 would help her to qualify for the pension.

In a statement issued announcing that she was stepping down Ms O'Sullivan said she was not taking up another offer.

"I may decide to take on some other interesting and exciting challenge down the line,” she said, but for now her intention is to retire and take some time with her family and adapt to the new phase of her life.

The announcement came as a surprise despite mounting pressure on the Commissioner to resign amid the recent garda scandals, including falsified alcohol breath tests, wrongful motoring convictions, financial irregularities at the Garda Training College, and the ill treatment of garda whistleblowers.

In a statement released yesterday, Ms O'Sullivan said she was stepping down because the "unending cycle" of investigations and inquiries has made it difficult to "implement the deep cultural and structural reform necessary to modernise" An Garda Síochana.

Ms O'Sullivan said: "It has become clear, over the last year, that the core of my job is now about responding to an unending cycle of requests, questions, instructions and public hearings involving various agencies including the Public Accounts Committee, the Justice and Equality Committee, the Policing Authority, and various other inquiries, and dealing with inaccurate commentary surrounding all of these matters.

"They are all part of a new – and necessary – system of public accountability. But when a Commissioner is trying – as I’ve been trying – to implement the deep cultural and structural reform that is necessary to modernise and reform an organisation of 16,000 people and rectify the failures and mistakes of the past but the difficulty is that the vast majority of her time goes, not to implementing the necessary reforms and meeting the obvious policing and security challenges, but to dealing with this unending cycle.”

The Minister for Justice, Charlie Flanagan, will meet today with the Policing Authority to begin the process of replacing the commissioner .

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