Minister O’Dea’s statement will convince no-one – Ó Caoláin
Commenting on Defence Minister Willie O’Dea’s “personal explanation” Sinn Féin Dáil leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said:
“Minister O’Dea’s statement will convince no-one. It is absurd for the Minister to claim that the matter was ‘a personal one’ between him and ‘a Sinn Féin representative in Limerick’.
“Willie O’Dea was speaking as a Cabinet Minister and Fianna Fáil TD and he made a deeply defamatory and personally damaging statement about Maurice Quinlivan. The Minister did this not because of personal animosity between them, but because Maurice was a candidate in the local government elections of last year and had rightly been highly critical of the Government and of Minister O’Dea in his political capacity.
“The Minister claimed that he corrected ‘the mistake’ when he realised it. That is stretching credibility since it took him four months to do so.
“The Minister’s statement in the Dáil was neither ‘non-argumentative’ nor ‘strictly personal’ and so was outside the provisions of Dáil Standing Orders for such a ‘personal explanation’.
“Sinn Féin has now tabled a motion of no confidence in the Minister.” ENDS