File photo: Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan has issued a statement in relation to the Garda whistleblower story involving garda sgt Maurice McCabe, in which she states “ My position remains unchanged. Nothing has emerged in the last three weeks which in any way changes that situation. A campaign of false accusations, repeated and multiplied, do not make me guilty of anything. I have made it clear that I was not part of any campaign to spread rumours about Sergeant McCabe and didn't know it was happening at the time it was happening. I have repeatedly refuted that claim and do so again. The easiest option for me would be to step aside until the Commission finishes its work. I'm not taking that option because I am innocent and because An Garda Síochána, under my leadership, has been making significant progress, with the help of our people, the Government, the Policing Authority and Garda Inspectorate, in becoming a beacon of twenty first century policing”. End. 15/9/2014. Under Pressure. Garda Interim Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan, under pressure as she responds to media questions regarding the latest claims by garda whistle blower SGt Maurice McCabe that there have been furter garda abuses of the penalty points system. They were speaking as the minister arrived at the Garda College in Templemore in County Tipperary to meet new recruits. Photo Eamonn Farrell/

Garda Commissioner Nóirin O’Sullivan


This afternoon.

The latest statement from Garda Commissioner Nóirin O’Sullivan further refuting rejecting allegations that she was part of the attempted smearing of Maurice McCabe.

‘A beacon of 21st Century policing’?


Earlier: Destroying Maurice McCabe

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66 thoughts on “Unmoved

    1. realPolithicks

      She’ll be gone very soon and hopefully this time the government will have the sense to bring in somebody from outside of Ireland to lead the force. I wouldn’t count on that though.

      1. classter

        As appealing as it may initially seem, there are clear downsides to bringing in someone from outside of Ireland.

        1. realPolithicks

          I’d be interested to hear what these “downsides” are. However it couldn’t possibly be any worse than it is now.

  1. mildred st. meadowlark

    She and Arlene Foster do make for a right pair.

    There is no integrity in Irish politics anymore.

    1. Andrew

      anymore? Can you tell when there was? The electorate don’t value integrity anyway, so it’s no surprise when those elected and their appointees have low standards. They are merely a reflection of the people who put them there. people like you, people like your neighbour.

        1. mildred st. meadowlark

          There’s no one like me. I’m the original snowflake.

          And perhaps you’re right Andrew and there never was any integrity in Irish politics. I look at work done by Mick Wallace, Claire Daly, Catherine Murphy and I have to hope people like them are the future of the political landscape, rather than a mainstay of the opposition forever trying to keep the usual crowd of hoors in check.

  2. Specific Gravity

    It says something when the most senior law enforcement officer in the land does not appear to understand the correct meaning of ‘refute’ .

      1. pluto

        In this statement she has rejected the claims made against her. She has not provided any evidence that would categorically prove or ‘refute’ that she was not aware of any smear campaign against McCabe.

        Evidence ‘refuting’ that she knew about the smear campaign could, for example, include a receipt for an extended holiday she took from November 2014 to the current day.

        1. classter

          I have just checked several dictionaries. They all include your definition but they also includes the following alternative definition:
          deny or contradict (a statement or accusation).

          So despite your stridency, you are actually wrong.

          1. Robert

            He’s not wrong. The term refute is repeatedly used these days (seems to be fashionable) where the term ‘reject’ and ‘strongly deny’ are more appropriate. In particular because it gives the impression there may actually be proof. There typically isn’t so the dishonesty is implicit. So indeed despite your stridency, it is you that is the fool.

          2. Sheik Yahbouti

            No. Pluto is quite correct. It’s just that useage has become so sloppy that this kind of thing becomes the norm. Much like the use of ‘fulsome ‘ by people who misunderstand its meaning.

          3. classter

            Yup, usage changes.

            Like it or not, it is true.

            Once all major dictionaries have accepted it, then you are wrong to say “does not appear to understand the correct meaning of ‘refute’ ”

            The fact that a more conservative or traditional user would not have used it this way is barely relevant & certainly does not warrant the dismissiveness pluto & specific gravity adopted.

            If that makes me a ‘pro establishment shill’, then fair enough.

          4. classter

            And by the way, if you go back & look at my comments you’ll see that I never liked or trusted O’Sullivan, although I disliked her predecessor even more

        2. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

          I think the time she took off wasn’t for a holiday. I’m not sure but I heard she had medical problems. Much like her, I offer zero proof.

          1. Specific Gravity

            Rebut, refute or repudiate?

            To rebut is to contest or deny something; to refute is to prove that it’s wrong.
            So when a politician claims to have refuted an allegation, what they mean is rebut.
            To repudiate someone is to disown them.

            If you don’t know the difference, you could always try “refudiate”, a word coined by Sarah Palin.

            Were it a statement from a layperson, I’d be inclined to let it slide, but as it is a senior officer of the law, fighting for their reputation, it seems fair to hold them to the appropriate standard and not give them the benefit of the doubt, given the seriousness of the matter and the relevance of the word in question.

  3. perricrisptayto

    Can’t defend the indefensable mrs.
    Just take the sack of cash and the platinum pension and go.
    At least we can forget about you then and move on .

  4. ScaryLady

    To quote Rachel English on twitter –

    “Re Noirin O’Sullivan’s statement. She hasn’t ‘refuted’ claims. She has rejected them. To refute something you have to prove it’s not true.”

    1. Tony

      Also ‘a campaign… do not make me guilty’

      Do it not, Noirin?

      She’s no beacon of 21st century speakin’

    2. Andrew

      Top quality journalism there by Rachel English. All that money spent on elocution and grammar is finally paying off . Really getting to the kernel of the issue Rachel.

  5. Daddy

    Beacon of policing? She must be joking.

    High profile drugs seizures and high visibility armed police checkpoints is just PR for the media and has little or no relevance to the victims of most crime which is petty theft, burglaries, bike theft, assaults, mobile phone thefts.

    The Garda Siochana is under-resourced, suffers from very bad morale, underpaid, far too centralised, political, has too broad a scope which brings it into areas better served by the army (subversive threats, terrorism).

    Her own husband arrested the senior Garda who claimed he was told to spread malicious rumours to journalists and politicians.

    Step aside.

      1. Jake38

        I certainly agree they are not underpaid. Their technology/resources appear about 30 years out of date, however.

  6. pluto

    When will ‘refute’ be restored to its proper use.

    Refute: ”prove (a statement or theory) to be wrong or false; disprove.”

    Key word: ‘prove’

    I think Noirin meant to say ‘reject’.

  7. Clampers Outside!

    ” The easiest option for me would be to step aside until the Commission finishes its work ”

    Still looking out for oneself, I see.
    Let me rephrase that for ya boss….

    ” The best option for me and the country would be to step aside permanently and let a new Commissioner and the Commission get on with it “

  8. Dee Cunniffe

    “A campaign of false accusations, repeated, do not make me guilty of anything.”
    Is this not the tactic the Guards themselves were using against McCabe?

  9. Ms Star

    Reckless refuting upsets me too but I think we are fighting a losing battle, it has slipped, as they say, into ‘parlance’.
    From the Oxford dictionary: Usage
    The core meaning of refute is ‘prove a statement or theory to be wrong’, as in attempts to refute Einstein’s theory. In the second half of the 20th century a more general sense developed, meaning simply ‘deny’, as in I absolutely refute the charges made against me. Traditionalists object to this newer use as an unacceptable degradation of the language, but it is widely encountered

  10. Happy Molloy

    In her defence, has there been any corroborating reports of rumour spreading from other journalists apart from the one who contacted Howlin anonymously ?

  11. Ms Star

    Who said the journalist contacted Howlin anonymously? He (and basically everyone else in the media and political circles) knows who the journalist is

  12. Ms Star

    Nope. And the journalist has said they are willing to go on public record. Not even Howlin, desperate and all as he is, could use second-hand information from an anonymous source

  13. Kieran NYC

    We know she’s going to have to go.

    She knows she’s going to have to go.

    Why is she still trying to stay?!

  14. francis

    “didn’t know it was happening at the time it was happening”… so she concedes the Guards were smearing and trying to ruin the man but it didn’t happen on her watch so shes grand. That’s quite the attitude from our police commissioner. gives me confidence

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