Secret State: Planning case heard behind closed doors
The political standards watchdog wanted me to breach the confidentiality of my sources, writes Philip Ryan
Deep in the bowels of a Georgian building on Leeson Street in Dublin city centre, a behind-closed-doors State investigation into allegations of planning irregularities took place last week.
On Monday, the Standards in Public Office Commission (Sipo) gathered in a large conference room in the basement of its headquarters to hear the opening statements of an investigation into activities in Mayo County Council.
The room was a hive of activity before Sipo chairman, retired judge Daniel O'Keeffe, and the other members of the commission took their seats. Solicitors marched in with hand-trucks full of files, witnesses sat anxiously wondering what they would be asked and a small cohort of the media readied their notebooks to record the proceedings.