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Heather Humphreys accuses Sinn Féin of setting up 'kangaroo court' against Paschal Donohoe

The minister said that Sinn Féin wasn’t affording Donohoe due process and seeking to act as ‘judge, jury and executioner’ against him.

MINISTER FOR Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys has accused Sinn Féin of attempting to act as “judge, jury and executioner” in a kangaroo court against Minister for Public Expenditure Paschal Donohue.

Speaking at the opening of a marina in Co Cavan today, Humphreys said that Donohoe, who has faced scrutiny over an undeclared election donation from businessman Michael Stone, isn’t being given due process.

Stone paid for election posters of Donohoe to be erected in 2016 and bought Fine Gael ‘superdraw’ tickets from the minister in 2020 and 2021.

“Can I just say that I have every confidence in Paschal Donohoe and can I just say that there’s something in this country and it’s called due process,” Humphreys told reporters today.

“Paschal Donohoe will make himself available in the Dáil next Tuesday. He said he will cooperate with any inquiry from SIPO and that is the appropriate way to do things.”

“Of course what Sinn Féin want to do is set up a kangaroo court with themselves appointed as judge, jury and executioner and that is not due process as I know it.”

The Cavan-Monaghan TD added that she believed that Donohoe is a hardworking minister who is a benefit to the country’s economy.

“We unfortunately heard of job losses this week in Argos, we’ve heard about job losses in the tech sector, there are clouds on the horizon and I can tell you that I would like to see Paschal Donohoe’s steady hand on the tiller of this country and certainly not Pearse Doherty,” she continued.

“Paschal Donohoe is an honorable and very decent and hardworking minister who has contributed hugely to this country and we have to take a step back here and just think to ourselves, are we trying to hound a man out of the office of President of the Euro Group?”

This week Donohoe said that he was initially unaware that the six people hanging his election posters in 2016 had been paid for their work, believing it to be voluntary.

He added that he was also unaware of a van belonging to Stone’s company being used.

In total, Donohoe said that €1,057 was left unaccounted for in his declarations to Sipo, which is his valuation of the labour and use of the company van.

Any corporate donor making a donation over €200 in value, whether in money or as a service, must register with Sipo as a corporate donor.

Humphreys made today’s comments as she officially opened a new marina project in Virginia, Co Cavan with 52 berths for boats.

She also defended party colleague Damien English, who resigned as Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment following revelations reported by The Ditch about a planning application English made.

The news website reported that English didn’t declare his ownership of a residential property on a planning application form in 2008. 

Humphreys stated:

“I’d have to say that Damien English has been a very good colleague to me and he is an extremely hard worker, he was a very effective minister.”

“He made an error and in fairness, he held his hands up and he paid a high price because he resigned his position as minister.”

Author
Jamie McCarron and Christina Finn
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