‘Will I Leave?’



Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell

Last night, on RTÉ One’s Late Debate, presenter Cormac Ó hEadhra spoke with his panel about the government negotiations between Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, following the third vote – and rejection – of both Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny and Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin as Taoiseach yesterday.

Fianna Fáil TD Thomas Byrne, Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell, AAA-PBP TD Paul Murphy, journalist Niamh Lyons, of The Times Ireland edition, and Stephen O’Byrnes, of MKC Consultants, were on the panel.

They were discussing public sector pay demands when things got a little heated.

Grab a tay…

Niamh Lyons: “My understanding of it is is that you know when you talk about USC and water whatever, those are the issues on the table that would be the basis of a deal that would allow them to do business. I’ve no, I think you’d be making a very big jump to say that they’ll sit down and agree together what policies they’ll discuss, as in, you know, the pay issue…”

Cormac Ó hEadhra: “Well they’ll have to talk surely about Lansdowne Road and reopen that..”

Lyons: “I don’t think that..”

Talk over each other

Alan Farrell: “I wouldn’t be, I wouldn’t be 100% sure and and very much like Thomas [Byrne], you can’t have the negotiation on live radio. But what I suppose, I could say would be that if it were to end up in the negotiations, it would probably be a good thing because clearly it’s something…”

Ó hEadhra: “God almighty. I mean god almighty…”

Farrell: “Clearly it’s something, clearly it’s something, clearly it’s something…”

Ó hEadhra: “The public representation we have in this..”

Farrell:Do you wanna talk on your own? Will I leave…

Ó hEadhra: “Hold on, I want to find out..”

Farrell:Would you like me to answer your question or do you want me to leave? Cause I’ll leave Cormac.”

Ó hEadhra: “I want to know your position on this because I’ve been asking you. In fairness Alan Farrell…”

Farrell: “There’s nothing fair Cormac about the manner in which you conduct these interviews.”

Ó hEadhra:It’s absolutely fair because there’s nothing fair to the public servants who want answers or the general public who want, who are homeless and who are on hospital trollies and whose children are being abused and don’t have social workers. There’s nothing fair about that.


Ó hEadhra: “There’s nothing fair about that.”

Farrell: “Well that’s, we weren’t discussing that, Cormac.”

Ó hEadhra: “We were discussing forming a Government.”

Farrell: “Yes we are.”

Ó hEadhra: “And I’m asking you…

Talk over each other

Farrell: “And what I’m telling you and I’ve repeated now three times, Cormac, if you continue to talk over me, Cormac, there is no point in me being here.”

Ó hEadhra: “What’s your position, let me ask you once more, on Lansdowne Road, do you personally, as a Fine Gael TD want to reopen Lansdowne Road in your talks with Fianna Fáil?

Farrell: “Well I don’t know whether they will arise and I’m not on the negotiating team so I won’t be taking part in that discussion.”

Ó hEadhra: “What’s your position as a Fine Gael TD?”

Farrell: “My personal, my personal view is, if I take two, in fact, three categories of public servants, the first being An Garda Siochana. I’ve always and I’ve said this publicly on a number of occasions when I was a member of the Oireachtas Justice Committee for five years that entry-level gardai are not paid enough. €23,000 is completely insufficient. I have said it publicly at committee and on the floor of the Dáil that a two-tier entrance system for members of the teaching profession is completely unacceptable, i.e. a starting teacher today versus I think a starting teacher in 2011, I think is paid about €3,000 more, less I should say, which equates to about €250,000 over the course of that person’s career. An nurses, whether my view is their not paid enough, the reality is that they are leaving this country in droves because they can get more money elsewhere. And that applies to doctors, NCHD, it applies to public consultants, it applies to a whole range of public sectors workers, right across the…”

Ó hEadhra: “And you would include Dublin Bus drivers in that as well?”

Farrell: “No, that question hasn’t come across my desk.”

Ó hEadhra: “But if it did?”

Farrell: “No I don’t believe that, well, the question hasn’t come up so I don’t know, I can’t…”

Talk over each other

Ó hEadhra: “Ok, I see it did come up, in talks at least, when the Luas question came up.”

Farrell: “Well perhaps as a comparison between a private company and their employees trying to benchmark themselves against the public company…”

Ó hEadhra: “So let me get this right: You say ‘yes, possibly’ to some pay increase to gardai, some…”

Farrell: “I didn’t say ‘yes, possibly’, I said if I were in the position..”

Ó hEadhra: “Yeah.”

Farrell: “And it is my opinion that they should be paid more. I was even more direct than you suggest.”

Ó hEadhra: “And nurses and teachers, but not Dublin Bus drivers?”

Farrell: “Well I don’t know how much Dublin Bus drivers are paid.”

Listen back in full here

Previously: ‘Let’s Be Very Clear’

15 thoughts on “‘Will I Leave?’

  1. 15 cents

    hes defo FG anyway, with that kind of contempt, and utilising the often rolled out FG tactic of gettin thick when his long winded irrelevant answer is interupted. the FG tagline should be “if youd let me finish, if youd let me finish”

  2. Anomanomanom

    So no mention of the other public sector workers who had pay slashed. Or the ridiculous pension levy we all pay.

    1. curmudegon

      Remind us again how many in the public sector were forced to emigrate because they lost their jobs? Or how about the fact that PS workers got their pay calculated from “benchmarking” figures plucked from the air. Private sector employees pay their taxes to pay for your pensions, but where are their pensions and job security? And if not enough taxes are paid to support PS wages, why is it that your remuneration should remain unchanged?

Comments are closed.