Images of Paschal Donohoe's posters being erected blow a further hole in his "explanation" for flouting donation rules - Mairéad Farrell TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Public Expenditure and Reform, Mairéad Farrell TD, has said that images published by the Irish Independent this evening blow a further hole in Minister Paschal Donohoe’s attempt to explain his flouting of donation rules.
“Minister Paschal Donohoe’s attempts to explain away a donation to him by his friend's company have been dealt another blow this evening as a result of images published by the Irish Independent.
“He has tried to suggest that services provided by his friend’s company do not constitute a political donation to him. This stretches all credibility.
“Images clearly show a group of workers who would appear to be coming straight off a building site, with hard hats and all, using a company van during daylight hours putting up his posters.
“This is despite repeated claims that this work was done at night - which would be outside normal working hours. This clearly contradicts statements he has made up to now.
“He has attempted to make this issue about filing an incorrect election expenses return. This is not the main issue at hand. The main issue is that he accepted a political donation that was not declared and should not have been accepted.
“The law is very clear on this. A candidate cannot accept a donation above €1,000. This donation was above that limit.
“The value that Paschal has ascribed to the postering service, provided by his friend, is a fraction of the commercial cost of such a service. Fine Gael have produced laughable figures to try to explain this by saying that three teams over four nights erected 150 posters in total.
“The images show these posters are doubled up. That would mean that each team put up approximately 16 posters per night on eight poles. Anyone involved in elections knows this is not believable. His numbers don’t add up.
“The Minister must come clean and thoroughly answer all of the outstanding issues.”