A Show of Solidarity: TDs Speak Out Against O’Brien’s Case – TheLiberal.ie – Our News, Your Views

A Show of Solidarity: TDs Speak Out Against O’Brien’s Case


Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe has shown his support of the 10 members of Oireachtas who are being prosecuted by Denis O’Brien.

In a statement on Tuesday he said “Privileges that are available to members of the Oireachtas are an absolutely essential cornerstone to how democracy operates”.

Business man Denis O’Brien has this week initiated court proceedings against the C.P.P after its findings that Independent TD Catherine Murphy did not abuse Dáil privilege when making allegations about O’Brien in the Dáil chambers.

O’Brien has named 10 members of Oireachtas including Ceann Comhairle Sean Barrett of Fine Gael, Joe Corey (F.G), Martin Heydon (F.G), Paul Kehoe (F.G), Dinny McGinley (F.G), John Lyons (Labour), Emmet Stagg (Labour), Sean Ó Feargháil (F.F), Aengus Ó Snodaigh (S.F) and John Halligan (Independent).

In a show of solidarity many other T.Ds have spoken out against the actions of O’Brien. Michael Martin, head of Fianna Fáil said in a statement on Monday that the “proceedings represent a threat to a fundamental right enshrined in our constitution, which is freedom of speech in Parliament”.

Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams has also spoken out against this heinous case, saying that “none of this is healthy for democracy. It does not serve the interests of citizens. TDs must be free to question the actions of the powerful and the privileged without fear or favour”.

When initially questioned by O’Brien over speeches made by Catherine Murphy, the C.P.P said that they could not determine whether accusations made by Murphy were true or false concerning the sale of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation to Siteserv, a company owned by Mr. O’Brien. An investigation was underway into certain I.B.R.C transactions.

O’Brien is also currently taking actions against Sinn Fein’s Pearse Doherty concerning speeches delivered in the Dáil, stating that they are in breech of his rights under the constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights.

O’Briens lawyers, William Fry, are accusing the House of Oireachtas of having no “effective parliamentary procedures to prevent a member abusing parliamentary privileges”. A meeting will be held between the C.P.P members and O’Brien in early September to discuss how they will proceed.

These proceedings have been initiated after Irish Water, which is tied to O’Brien, had failed their Eurostat evaluation due to inconsistency in payments and the company’s dependency on Government financial aid.


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