Statements on George Lee

Statement by Enda Kenny on George Lee

I’m greatly saddened by George Lee's decision to resign from Fine Gael and politics just eight months into his new Dáil career. 

Resignation statement from George Lee

I wish to announce that I have resigned from the Fine Gael Party and from my seat in Dáil Eireann today Monday 8th February 2010. 

It has been a very difficult decision, but it is one that I have taken after a great deal of reflection on my position and on the role that I have been playing in Fine Gael since I joined that Party in May last year. 

There’s only one system that matters, and it’s broken

There were four gardaí outside the examination hall at Trinity College last Tuesday evening. I asked them who was attending an event (on electoral systems) in the hall and was worth assaulting. They thought about the question, and acknowledged that they had no idea.

The event was both a seminar and a sitting of the Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution, chaired by the admirable Sean Ardagh TD. The event was boring - not quite excruciatingly so, but very much so. More than that, it was entirely pointless.

Strategy to combat poverty 'more rhetoric than commitment'

Minister for Social and Family Affairs, Mary Hanafin today launched the Irish Programme for 2010, the ‘European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion’. However, in an inverview with Politico, Minister Hanafin could not commit to reducing the vast disparity in poverty rates around the country. Nor could she assure that further cuts to Community Development Programmes would not be made in 2010, the year dedicated to combating poverty and social exclusion. (Audio below)

Radical reform of electoral system is needed

Minister for transport Noel Dempsey TD has called for radical reform of the Irish electoral system. Minister Dempsey was speaking after the first public sitting of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on The Constitution, held last night in Trinity College Dublin (TCD). The session had been convened to discuss electoral reform in the constitution.

Fine Gael call for cuts on embassy expenditure

Fine Gael TD John O’Mahony today called on the Minister for Foreign Affairs to reduce expenditure on Irish embassies and consulates worldwide. O’Mahony’s call was prompted by figures released by the Department of Foreign Affairs, at Mr. O’Mahony’s request, which show that the state has spent €180m on the administration of Ireland's embassies and consulates abroad in the last three years.

Dail a barrel of laughs, but of no use

At 6.05pm last Tuesday in Dáil Éireann , Arthur Morgan of Sinn Féin was speaking on the motion to hold an inquiry into the banking crisis.

Brian Lenihan, the Minister for Finance, was on the government front bench talking to Frank Fahey, and they were having great gas. Beside Lenihan was Tánaiste Mary Coughlan, who was standing talking to Áine Brady and Peter Power in the second row of the government benches, and they were having great gas.

Tribunal is only way to get answers on banks

Nearly eight years ago, on April 11th, 2002, seven judges of the Supreme Court thought it necessary to convey their views on Oireachtas inquiries into the Abbeylara case with a verbosity that even they themselves never exceeded, either before or since. 

The combined judgments come to 123,900 words, more than most large books. The judgments are repetitive and at times rambling. For these reasons it is hardly surprising that few people have ever read them. Life is short.

Current legislation fails to protect whistleblowers

Transparency International(TI) have called for a "single clear law" to protect Irish whistleblowers in a report launched today. Speaking at the launch, TI Ireland director John Devitt said the Irish government "have failed to protect whistleblowers" and criticised the "patchwork" legislation currently in place.