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I wouldn't have treated whistleblowers that way --- Garda Inspectorate Chief

Robert Olson is highlighting wider problems in the force, saying this morning that “culture is something you don’t change with a couple of policies and it’s fixed next week”.

Image: Garda Inspectorate

THE CHIEF INSPECTOR of the Independent Garda Inspectorate has said he wouldn’t have treated the two garda whistleblowers in the same manner as their superiors in the force when they first came forward with their claims about penalty points.

The independent statutory body published its own report into the penalty points controversy back in March.

It found there were  ”consistent and widespread breaches of policy by those charged with administering” the system and recommended a raft of changes.

“Needless to say I wouldn’t have treated them that way if they were somebody in my organisation,” Chief Inspector of the Inspectorate Robert Olson told RTÉ’s Today with Seán O’Rourke this morning.

“We had meetings with Sgt McCabe — he was in our office and gave us a lot of information.”

We found all the information that he gave us on the fixed charge system was credible.

Olson said he had no doubt that Sgt McCabe and retired garda John Wilson were “very good police officers,” adding “there’s no question about it”. 

And he pointed to wider problems in the force, saying:

Culture is something you don’t change with a couple of policies and it’s fixed next week.

Olson was also asked about problems with the garda patrol car fleet, which he said was a “financial time bomb that’s just ticking away”.

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“The guards are doing a great job getting jobs done [considering] some of the resources they don’t have.

They’ve been shuffling them around — which is a smart move — from urban to rural to get more mileage out of them

“But what that means is they’re all going to crash at the same time and there’s going to be a big bill to pay.

It’s troublesome.

Read: Taoiseach and Justice Minister apologise to Garda whistleblower Sergeant Maurice McCabe

Read: Justice Department’s most senior civil servant WILL go before TDs and Senators

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Daragh Brophy

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