#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 13°C Saturday 19 September 2020
Advertisement

Jackie Healy-Rae threatened to withdraw support from government who told 'blatant lies'

New documents published by RTÉ reveal details of the correspondence between the independent Kerry TD and the government prior to last December’s budget as well as earlier this year.

Jackie Healy-Rae (L) and his son Michael (File photo)
Jackie Healy-Rae (L) and his son Michael (File photo)
Image: Photocall Ireland

NEW DOCUMENTS HAVE revealed that independent TD Jackie Healy-Rae threatened to withdraw his support from the last government asking them to stop “this charade of spin and lies”.

Documents released under the Freedom of Information Act to RTÉ’s The Week in Politics programme have revealed details of a fax the then Kerry South TD Healy-Rae sent to government buildings in the early hours of 22 November.

In the fax he said the Taoiseach had told “blatant lies” to the Irish people regarding the presence of the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank in Dublin and said that Brian Cowen’s cabinet ministers did similar to the “detriment of the Irish people”. He urged them to leave their posts and “stop this charade of spin and lies”.

This fax came just hours before Healy-Rae went on RTÉ Radio to say that he was not “100 per cent certain” that he could support the budget announced on December 7, a programme he eventually did support.

When contacted by TheJournal.ie this afternoon, Healy-Rae senior said in a brief conversation that he could not now recall the events prior to the budget:

I’m so long gone out of it now, I can’t really account for it.

The documents that will feature in a report on RTÉ’s Week in Politics programme tonight also reveal further correspondence between Jackie Healy-Rae and the government in which he implored the Taoiseach to ring-fence money for two road projects in Kerry after the Dáil was dissolved.

The documents also reveal that the government had agreed to appoint the now retired Healy-Rae’s son and new Kerry South TD Michael to the board of the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF), although this never transpired.

Healy-Rae junior told TheJournal.ie this afternoon that he did not want to be on this board and that the only board he sought membership of is that of the Citizens Information Board which is already a source of some controversy.

He defended his position on the quango today pointing out that he no longer draws expenses from it since becoming a TD and that the position is useful to his work:

If I wanted a position with money I would have gone looking for some other board. I didn’t look for those. I wanted the CIB. I actively went after that.

It is helpful to me as a TD and I make valuable contributions to the board. It is a meanginful job that I like and enjoy.

Read more on the FoI documents relating to the Healy-Raes on RTÉ News >

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

Read next:

COMMENTS (25)