Tuesday 13 November 2018

External oversight should be bedrock of accountability for Garda force

  

Report: Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan at the opening of the new Kevin Street garda station. Photo: Mark Condren
Report: Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan at the opening of the new Kevin Street garda station. Photo: Mark Condren
Ivan Yates

Ivan Yates

Ploughing and policing are poles apart. So, the publication of the policing report on the same day that 100,000 decamped the annual agri-fest in windswept Tullamore meant a muted media response.

The Government's anaemic "noting" of the recommendations was indicative of its priority not to commit to more than the existing €1.6bn expenditure on policing. The report's absence of a financial compass, costings or future budgeting allows it to accompany previous strategic analysis - cherry-picking, with only occasional genuflections.

The lack of a headline-grabbing idea, like a name change for An Garda Síochána or a proposal to bear firearms/tasers, meant it didn't catch the public imagination. But fatigue with controversies shouldn't deter us from modernising the Garda by its centenary year of 2022.

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