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PAC must investigate Public Service Card debacle - David Cullinane TD

17 August, 2019 - by David Cullinane TD

Sinn Féin TD for Waterford and member of the Public Accounts Committee David Cullinane, has written to the chair of the PAC to request that hearings are held into the issue of the Public Services Card.

Deputy Cullinane said:

"If there has ever been an issue for the Public Accounts Committee this is it.

"A huge amount of public money was spent over the years on the expansion of the Public Services Card into areas where it has no legal coherence or validity.

"There was also a stubborn refusal on the part of the Department of Social Protection to engage with the concerns raised by members of the public and by civil liberty groups.

"The fact that the Public Services Card Project lacked a legal basis and mismanaged people’s data raises serious questions for senior officials within the Department and indeed for the former and current ministers, Leo Varadkar and Regina Doherty respectively. 

"It is not as if they weren't told time and time again that this would happen. 

"Other committees will look at the issue from a policy perspective, but it is clear to me that the PAC must investigate this in terms of cost, practices, and in terms of systems and procedures.

"I will be writing to the Chair of the PAC to request that such an investigation is put onto its work schedule."

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