2014 PAC members refusing to accept responsibility for difficulties of Angela Kerins

The former CEO of the Rehab Group wants any mention of her name to be removed from the public record

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Former chief executive of the Rehab Group, Angela Kerins, at the High Court. Image: RollingNews.ie

The members of the 2014 Public Accounts Committee (PAC) are refusing to accept responsibility for the difficulties experienced by Angela Kerins.

The former CEO of the Rehab Group claims the line of questioning adopted by the committee during a hearing she attended was beyond its remit.

She wants any mention of her name to be removed from the public record and she’s also claiming damages for the effect it had on her health.

Ms Kerins waited outside the court room this morning as video footage from the PAC hearing on April 10th 2014 was played.

Rehab’s board of directors were asked if she was a “dominant” or “forceful” chief executive before the then Chairman John McGuinness brought proceedings to an end.

Ms Kerins was unable to attend that day because of poor health.

Mr McGuinness finished by declaring “this is taxpayer’s money” and rejecting her claims that a meeting she’d attended the previous month was a witchhunt and a smokescreen to allow members make judgemental statements about her €240,000 salary and other matters she considered to be “wholly private”.

John Rogers, who’s acting for Ms Kerins, said these parting words were delivered in the nature of a ruling and ignored the boundaries of the public spending watchdog.

Last week, the court heard that Ms Kerins was hospitalised following the seven-hour hearing she attended and tried to take her own life 15 days later because she felt it was the only way to end the controversy surrounding the charity group.

Paul Gallagher, senior counsel for the PAC members, began his defence of the action this morning.

He opened by saying his clients are “clearly conscious of and sympathetic to difficulties experienced by Angela Kerins”.

He said they did not intend to make things more difficult for her but added that they did not accept responsibility for her difficulties.