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Taoiseach Refuses to Answer Questions on What Department of Justice Knew Regarding O’Higgins

14 November 2017

Statement by Alan Kelly TD
Spokesperson on Health

Labour TD Alan Kelly has said:

"The Taoiseach's response today in the Dail to my questions regarding the Department of Justice raise even more questions than answers.

"Firstly the Taoiseach refused to say whether the Department of Justice were privy to the legal strategy adopted by the previous Garda Commissioner at the O'Higgins Commission.

"In fact his comment that: 'The Department of Justice and Equality is a big place with many different people in it but, as things stand, the Department has not been able to find any record of being informed before the fact of the legal strategy the Commissioner was going to pursue' is quite unbelievable. Has he not asked the Secretary General and everyone else relevant in the Department?

"Furthermore, this answer isn't final and could change. It seems like the Taoiseach doesn't know whether to believe his own Department of Justice. And amazingly now not long into his tenure, the Secretary General of the Department is to retire.

"The Taoiseach failed of course to reveal that today in the Dail. One of the questions I have down to be answered this week is whether the Minister for Justice has full confidence in his secretary general?

"So I'd like to ask the Taoiseach the following:

- To provide full details of what communications there was between Senior Garda Management and the Department of Justice on May 15th regarding the O'Higgins Commission?

- What actions did the Department of Justice take and when after what happened at the O’Higgins Commission to Sgt McCabe on May 15th 2015?

- What information did the Department of Justice give to the O'Neill Enquiry?

- Is the Department of Justice engaging fully with the Disclosures Tribunal and providing it with the same information it provided O’Neill?

ENDS