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Failure of Minister to introduce fully independent Garda Complaints procedures criticised

25 January, 2006


Commenting on the motion before the Dáil today to approve the appointment of Justice Kevin Haugh, Carmel Foley and Conor Brady to the Garda Siochána Ombudsman Commission, the Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Equality and Human Rights, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, reiterated his dismay that the Minister has opted not to introduce a fully independent complaints procedure under a single Garda Ombudsman with powers at least equivalent to those of Nuala O'Loan's office covering the Six Counties.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, "Sinn Fein has already made it clear that our preference would be for a single Garda Ombudsman with powers at least equivalent to those of Nuala O'Loan. The Minister failed to make the case for his chosen model. We also regret the fact that the Minister failed to make a 'proven track record in Human Rights advocacy' the fundamental criteria for appointment to the Commission.

"However, I welcome the demise of the Garda Complaints Board and hope the Ombudsman Commission will facilitate the receipt of complaints without delay." ENDS

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