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There's a new garda confidential recipient... but not for long

Retired judge Pat McMahon will vacate the office once it is abolished in the coming weeks.

Justice Minister Alan Shatter
Justice Minister Alan Shatter
Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

THE GOVERNMENT HAS appointed a retired judge as the new garda confidential recipient to replace the sacked Oliver Connolly.

Pat McMahon’s appointment is temporary as the office is being abolished in the coming weeks. He retired from the bench last April.

The confidential recipient is tasked with receiving confidential reports of corruption or malpractice within An Garda Síochána from garda members or civilian employees.

McMahon’s appointment comes on foot of the sacking of Connolly last month after he was unable to repudiate comments he allegedly made in a conversation with the garda whistleblower Maurice McCabe.

The appointment follows consultation by Shatter with the gardaí, the Garda Ombudsman and garda representative bodies as mandated under the An Garda Siochána Act.

The office of confidential recipient is being abolished with an amendment to the Protected Disclosures Bill, dubbed the ‘Whistleblowers’ Bill’, to allow serving gardaí to make complaints about garda conduct to the Garda Ombudsman.

With the Whistleblowers’ Bill expected to pass the Dáil and Seanad by the Easter recess, McMahon’s tenure will be short-lived.

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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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