Friday 24 November 2017

Sam Smyth: Poor old Ivor hasn't a friend in the world, or a proper explanation

Sam Smyth

Ivor Callely should have cut a lonely figure yesterday after being excoriated for his €81,000 expenses claim, but he was playing the part of the invisible man. He wasn't in the chamber when the Senate discussed his expenses claims and that irritated the Taoiseach as much as it frustrated his peers.

Later, an angry Brian Cowen sent an emissary to give a firm instruction to Mr Callely and in his absence colleagues in the Senate ripped into his reputation. The question they were all asking was: How can a career Dub like Callely, who has lived all his life and owns a house and a constituency office in the capital, be resident in Cork for expenses purposes?

Mr Callely was not elected but was a Taoiseach's nominee to the Senate after he lost his Dail seat in Dublin in the 2007 general election. However, in December 2007, he gave his holiday home in west Cork to the Oireachtas authorities as his main address and since then he has claimed an astonishing €81,000 in expenses.

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