A Formal Complaint


David McCourt, left, and Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Pat Breen


In the Sunday Business Post.

Hugh O’Connell reported:

Fine Gael junior minister Pat Breen held a number of previously unreported meetings with David McCourt who is heading up the last remaining bid for the National Broadband Plan (NBP), The Sunday Business Post can disclose.

Breen met McCourt on three occasions in 2016 including at a breakfast meeting in the Merrion Hotel.

The Minister of State with responsibility for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection has also visited McCourt at his home in Co Clare on several occasions “in a private capacity” over the last two years.


Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy

This morning…

Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy lodged an official complaint with the Ceann Comhairle’s office, claiming Mr Breen refused to answer, within the specified timeframe, a parliamentary question she had asked regarding his engagements with David McCourt and bidders in the National Broadband Plan process.

Ms Murphy claims her question should have been replied to by Thursday evening last (October 18) but it wasn’t, while he separately provided answers to a journalist.

Ms Murphy said:

“The parliamentary questions process is a vitally important one and that it might be circumvented in any way is a cause of grave concern.

“It is exceptionally unusual for a PQ not to be replied to within the specified timeframe and for me to then see that the same Minister has spoken with a journalist on the topic whilst neglecting his duties under the parliamentary questions process is hugely frustrating.

“I have lodged a formal complaint with the Ceann Comhairle regarding Minister Breen and his Department’s actions in this regard and I await a reply. It is vital that the PQ process is respected by all Ministers and Departments no matter how unsavoury the answer they have to give might be for them personally.”

Breen had three more meetings with final broadband bidder McCourt (Hugh O’Connell, Sunday Business Post)

Previously: Courting David

13 thoughts on “A Formal Complaint

  1. Ron

    She is a fantastic politician. In fact Catherine Murphy, Wallace and Clare Daly are the best politicians the people have elected to the Dail. I have no doubt they will rightfully top the poll in their respective constituencies at the upcoming GE

    1. Zaccone


      Whatever about anyone’s views on the SocDems as a party, and/or potential disagreements with their political stances, everyone must recognise the huge value Catherine Murphy brings to the country. A brilliant national level politician.

  2. phil

    Maybe Pat spoke to the journalist “in a private capacity” , if so, he should say so , and the problems will go away ….

  3. Mike

    Good on her…
    While its easy to say “ah there’s always one”, it is really important that everyone elected and funded by the tax-payer actually takes the responsibilities seriously.

    I have to confess to finding Mick Wallace and Claire Daly a bit irksome sometimes – but that says more about me than them. Catherine Murphy, Mick Wallace and Claire Daly are so important to keeping the house honest by their relentless straight talking and holding people to account.

    One thing they can never be accused of is being schmoozy cronies – and they are such an important part of a healthy democracy.

  4. Vanessa off the Telly

    Exactly the way to do it
    Hon’ Catherine
    There is no way the FineGirls will be able to spin this out
    Breen will have to give an apology to the CC from the floor

  5. missred

    David McCourt is a Yank, right? Sometimes I get them all mixed up. It’s the teeth that give it away

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