Saturday 17 March 2018

Minister should lay down law

UNQUALIFIED support from the incoming president of the Garda Representative Body (GRA) for his predecessor's attack on the Government has turned what might have been seen as an eccentric, valedictory outburst into something far more serious.

In a vitriolic declaration of no confidence, at the GRA annual conference on Tuesday night, Michael O'Boyce accused the Government of national sabotage. He did not actually stand up and make the speech because, he said, the Minister for Justice had not turned up to respond to the accusations.

Dermot Ahern had taken a rain check on his intended humiliation and gone to RTE instead. In Limerick, hundreds of assembled gardai gave the unspoken speech a standing ovation anyway. Mr O'Boyce accused the Government, Fianna Fail and the Minister for Justice of corruption and treachery. His successor, the new president of the GRA, says he has no difficulty in supporting those sentiments, "100pc and without reservation". And the general secretary of the GRA insists they accurately reflect members' views.

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