President Higgins and Joan Freeman

Further to revelations of a hitherto unknown and unaudited annual Presidential allowance of €317,00…

Presidential candidate Joan Freeman writes::

“I’m shocked to hear that €317,000 of public money is paid every year without audit, without checks and without accountability.

I know of no other public money that is treated in this way, and to find people actually defending it is mind boggling.

On what possible grounds could you defend this level of secrecy?

As someone who has worked in the voluntary and charity sectors for years, I’m disappointed at the double standards in the way scrutiny is applied to public monies.

When we, rightly, demand openness, transparency and accountability of public spending, it behoves us to lead by example.

That is not the case here and we should be told what this budget is needed for, why it hasn’t been accounted for and why no-one bothered to ask questions until now.”


Yesterday: The President’s €317,000 Top-Up ‘Allowance

49 thoughts on “On Freeloading

  1. ReproButina

    Presidential candidate Joan Freeman may as well write “I see that one of the Dragons is trying to make hay out of these revelations and I want to take this opportunity to get my name out there as well. That this has been practice since long before Michael D became president is irrelevant to these feeble attempts to somehow attack him. “

    1. Joan

      Freeman is basically the Iona Institute candidate. She believes she was cured at Knock. And she hates the pro-choicers. Fupp her.

  2. Molly-mopps

    Says the pot calling the kettle black
    A politician not knowing about this is pretty bizarre

    To make her statement shows contempt
    Evidently she thinks the electorate are gob poos

  3. b

    The fact that no questions have been asked about it is a matter for criticizing the members of the executive and not the Presidency. MDH has been returning about 10% of it annually too, how many other departments return parts of their budgets?

  4. bisted

    …the sector most associated with fraud and unaccountability has surely been the charity sector…it also seems to engender a huge sense of entitlement…

  5. johnny

    she lacks credibility to put it mildly……..
    “Ms Freeman, who also lodged her nomination papers on Tuesday, confirmed she would release the names of donors behind €120,000 in loans made to her campaign in the coming days.
    “They are Irish, and they are based in America, but they are Irish business people who have helped me in the past,” she said, adding that the identities would be disclosed after she informed her backers of the move “out of courtesy”.”

      1. Daisy Chainsaw

        God cured her scaly hand, you know. Very scientific.

        Would her backers be the same crowd funding Solace House, the NYC based version of Pieta that she set up? The Yanks need somewhere to put their dolla now that the 8th has been repealed and they’ve no need to be paying Iona/LoveBoats/SavetheHate etc. Bagging a president would be quite the coup.

        We all know that’s just more of their money wasted that could be going into mental health initiatives.

        1. johnny

          -seems little un-sporty to have a go,I focused on the Pieta USA part,which appeared to be Irish govt funded and then morphed into Solace House-but she has ‘shone a light’ on mental health in Ireland and for that i respect her-

  6. Joe Small

    The timing of this is just unreal. Someone is looking to damage Higgins by suggesting he misspent State funds. As FF control the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, its not unreasonable to suggest they’re playing a strong role in pushing this and its equally reasonable to assume this will benefit their unofficial candidate Sean Gallagher the most.

          1. DeKloot

            I read that op assways…. I mean MDH is the ONLY credible candidate….. And as for SG credible? Hilarious.

  7. Daisy Chainsaw

    Mary II had 14 years of this slush fund to play with and not word one was said about it. Why wasn’t it an issue in 1998 when Fianna Fail set it up for their candidate?

  8. Cian

    Just wondering – has anyone actually asked Higgins what it was spent on?

    Just because FOI doesn’t apply to the President doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t volunteer to tell us.

      1. DeKloot

        Having had the honour of attending an event at the Aras as a result of community and charity work I do, I can imagine that sort of stuff is not cheap to put on. There’s stuff going on there every other day of the week. I feel this will backfire spectacularly on those trying to exploit this cheaply.

        1. giggidygoo

          OPW expenditure includes the cost of catering for the 20,000 or so people that visit the formal rooms at Aras an Uachtarain and attend events hosted by the President.

          That is accounted for by the OPW. That is totally different from the €317,000 unaccountable figure.

          1. Cian

            Are there other costs associated with an event at the Aras that might have come out of the slush fund – separate to the catering costs that OPW cover?

    1. scottser

      it’s well known that miggledy’s shoes are so small that they have to be made by elves, and they don’t work for free buddy.

  9. Starina

    To my mind this whole thing doesn’t make Higgins look suspicious, it makes the greedy Dragons Den corporate chancers currently competing for President look suspicious. They would definitely have known about this gargantuan slush fund and would love to get their paws on it. It’s like winning the Lotto.

    1. SOQ

      Maybe we could elect all three dragons at the one time? We just need to work out how to sew three heads together. Sure we’ll figure it out, afterwards, a bit like Brexit.

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