Adams apologies to Mc Hugh over “inaccurate” comments on state board appointment

Gerry Adams

The Sinn Fein President has apologised to Minister of State Joe Mc Hugh after wrongly claiming he has made an appointment to a state board without going through the proper channels.

Mr Adams made a personal statement in the Dail last night acknowledging that he had made inaccurate comments during Leaders' Questions.

Mr Adams' comments referred to Minister Mc Hugh's decision to appoint Fintan Gorman as Chairperson of the Board of Inland Fisheries Ireland. It was later confirmed that Mr Gorman’s appointment wasn’t an outside one, he was already on the board of the organisation and the chairmanship appointment was part of normal procedure.

When he was informed his comments were incorrect, Mr Adams said, he phoned Minister McHugh, who accepted his apology.

He's now asked for the record of the Dail to be amended to remove any reference to Minister McHugh in his speech.

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I would like to make a personal statement under Business Order 44. Thank you Cathaoirleach.

I made a blunder/mistake when I spoke earlier.

Today during my talking at Leader’s Questions, I mentioned that Joe McHugh was one of the Ministers who was in the news recently because of appointment to a state board without consulting with the State Appointments Service.

From then, I have been informed that those reports  were incorrect. I phoned Minister McHugh and he accepted my apology.

I wish to amend Dáil Proceedings according to any reference to Minister McHugh I made in my speech today. 

Section 12(1)(a) of the Inland Fisheries Act 2010 provides that one of the existing Board members SHALL be appointed by the Minister as the Chairperson.  Essentially, the Minister is obliged to appoint a Chair from the existing board, which means that the PAS process was not applicable in this instance. Mr Gorman was already a Board member (with a term of 5 years from 10 September Mr Gorman’s appointment wasn’t an outside one; Mr Gorman was already on the board of the organisation and the chairmanship appointment was part of normal procedure.2013).  His appointment as Chairman from within the existing Board only runs for the remainder of his 5 year term.