Monday 11 December 2017

Editorial: Public will decide on Shatter controversy

Former Justice Minister Alan Shatter. CourtPix
Former Justice Minister Alan Shatter. CourtPix

The former Justice Minister Alan Shatter thinks he is a wronged man and used more than 3,877 words in the Dail yesterday to explain why he believes so. Mr Shatter's main complaint appears to be that Sean Guerin SC spent 19 hours interviewing the garda 'whistleblower' Sergeant Maurice McCabe but declined to interview Mr Shatter for the government-commissioned report 'A Review of the Action Taken by An Garda Siochana Pertaining to Certain Allegations Made by Sergeant Maurice McCabe'.

While Mr Shatter concedes that it was "right" for Mr Guerin to talk with Sgt McCabe for as long as he deemed necessary, he disagrees with the barrister's decision not to interview others "whose good name, reputation and credibility could or would be affected by his report". And, of course, Mr Shatter believes he fits into this category and he should now be given a full explanation as to why he was not interviewed. Mr Shatter is firmly of the belief that as Minister for Justice he gave "substantial attention" to allegations made by Sgt McCabe.

Mr Shatter resigned on publication of the Guerin Report. "The result, in my case, of Mr Guerin's report, was to render my continuing as minister untenable and, as a consequence, I resigned my position. That is done. However, the process involved and the failure to adhere to fair procedures has serious and wider implications," he says.

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