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Phil Hogan says he was subjected to ‘full-scale attack’ by Taoiseach and Tánaiste

“I didn’t get due process, unlike others,” the former EU Commissioner said in an interview.

Former EU Commissioner Phil Hogan
Former EU Commissioner Phil Hogan
Image: Shutterstock/Alexandros Michailidis

FORMER EUROPEAN COMMISSIONER Phil Hogan has insisted he “broke no law” and was left with “no choice” but to resign after a “full-scale” attack by Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. 

In his first interview since resigning over the golf-gate controversy – and his movements before and after the event – Hogan told Kilkenny People: “I didn’t get due process, unlike others. I am very disappointed that there was a huge effort concentrated on my resignation.”

Hogan came under scrutiny in the days after it was revealed he attended an 80-person Oireachtas Golf Society dinner in Clifden last month. 

The event lead to the resignation of Agriculture Minister Dara Calleary and caused outrage among the public over the flouting of public health advice on restrictions on movement. 

Hogan told Kilkenny People: “I always feel like Irish people expect due process in the right forum. I didn’t get that. I wasn’t given that chance.”

“The government had a full scale attack on my compliance or otherwise,” said Hogan, adding that he “had no option but to resign because of the huge pressure from the Taoiseach, the Tanáiste and the media”. 

Hogan said that his life in public service after 38 years “has come to and end”. 

“I am going to take some time out and reflect on what to do next,” he said, adding that he would continue to base himself in Brussels while he considers his future.

The interview comes after MEP Mairead McGuinness was chosen as Ireland’s new EU Commissioner. 

Ireland did not retain the Trade portfolio however, and McGuinness will instead take the Financial Services and Financial Stability and Capital Markets Union portfolio.

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European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen said that McGuinness has “significant political experience on EU issues”.

“This experience is crucial in carrying forward the EU’s Financial Sector policy agenda, and ensuring it supports and strengthens the Commission’s key priority, notably the twin green and digital transition,” von der Leyen said yesterday. 

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