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Frank Flannery is doing a weekly political podcast with Bill O'Herlihy

The former Fine Gael strategist is collaborating with the famous retired RTÉ broadcaster.

Frank Flannery and Bill O'Herlihy in a video preview of 'The Flannery Files'
Frank Flannery and Bill O'Herlihy in a video preview of 'The Flannery Files'
Image: YouTube

FRANK FLANNERY, THE former Fine Gael strategist who quit the party in controversial circumstances earlier this year, is to do a weekly political podcast with retired RTÉ broadcaster Bill O’Herlihy.

The first podcast is due to be recorded and released early next week and will feature Flannery in conversation with O’Herlihy, a former media handler for ex-Fine Gael leader Garret FitzGerald, discussing the big political issues of the day.

Flannery told TheJournal.ie: “I find myself in an unusually luxurious position of being political detached, relatively speaking. But I have a huge interest in the political situation as it’s evolving in Ireland which I think is extraordinarily interesting.”

The project is being run by businessman Heatley Tector who said said that the podcast will be available on iTunes and on a dedicated website. It will focus on the big political stories of the day with video content also planned. Flannery said he is receiving a “modest fee” for his contributions.

A video preview of what to expect was published on YouTube last month.

In the video Flannery, who has not been shy of criticising Fine Gael since quitting the party, says his former party now seems “hellbent on self-destruction” and describes cronyism as being “like the Ebola of Irish politics – incurable”.

Source: Colm o'neill/YouTube

Flannery is Fine Gael’s former director of elections who quit that role earlier this year amid controversies over his role as a lobbyist for the Rehab Group where he was a former CEO and board member.

He said that he would aim to be objective and would not be “assisting Fine Gael’s efforts to advance its own position” despite his long links to the party. However, Flannery said he would be putting forward ideas for all political parties to consider, including Fine Gael.

“If they listen to them and implement then I find it will assist them [Fine Gael]. But if on the other hand they choose to ignore them and say: ‘That gobshite is only sowing sour grapes’ they can do that as well.”

O’Herlihy, who has a long association with Fine Gael, retired from broadcasting with RTÉ after the summer World Cup in Brazil.

Tector said that having previously recorded a cricket podcast – which featured on TheJournal.ie‘s sister website TheScore.ie – at his own studios in Clonskeagh, he was keen to get into the world of political podcasting.

“My partner in the world of podcasting is [Newstalk present and RTÉ pundit] George Hook and George would have worked with Bill and so that’s how it came about,” he said .

“I was keen to run with the political podcast. Then it was then a case of who will we get? Who do we think will fit the bill? We thought these two guys would be prefect and fingers crossed it will work.”

The podcast will run for about half-an-hour and the first instalment is due online next Tuesday.

Read: Who is Frank Flannery and why is everyone talking about him?

Read: Flannery ‘holding options open’ on proceedings over PAC’s Rehab inquiry

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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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