Varadkar no-confidence vote targets Government over 'insider dealing' - Eoin Ó Broin


Michael Staines
Michael Staines

10.12 9 Nov 2020


Share this article


Sinn Féin has said its motion of no confidence in the Tánaiste is about highlighting the way this Government does its business.

Last week, Leo Varadkar apologised to the Dáil for sending a confidential GP agreement to the head of the NAGP while he was Taoiseach.

He admitted it was “not best practice” to send the document to his friend Dr Maitiú Ó Tuathail; however, he insisted “there was nothing selfish or dishonest, let alone corrupt or illegal in what I did.”

The Dáil will debate the Sinn Féin motion of no confidence in him tomorrow afternoon.

On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Sinn Féin housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin said the motion is about holding the Government to account.

“This is not some side issue,” he said. “This is about how the Government does its business.

“It is about the kind of insider dealing where those on the inside, those who are friends or political supporters of government, get privileged access and the rest of us don’t.

“We have seen that, for example, in how banking policy is developed and in how policy on the insurance industry is developed.”

Leo Varadkar leaving Dublin Castle after attending a Cabinet meeting, 03-11-2020. Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire/PA Images

Deputy Ó Broin said he believes Fine Gael in particular has a “way of doing business.”

“That, if you are a friend of the Taoiseach or Tánaiste, if you are a political supporter, you get privileged access to information that you should not get,” he said.

“That is not a good way for any Government to do business.”

He said no-one in the opposition was satisfied with Minister Varadkar's answer last week.

"We don’t think his account of events is credible and further information has leaked out since then," he said.

"In the absence of Micheál Martin, as Taoiseach, taking a grip of this issue and taking some action, unfortunately we have been forced to do what we are going to do tomorrow and say very clearly, given what the Tánaiste has said and not said, we don’t have confidence in him to continue his role."

Minister of State Peter Burke outside Leinster House COVID restrictions Minister of State Peter Burke outside Leinster House, 08-10-2020. Image: Leah Farrell/RollingNews

Also on the show, Fine Gael’s Peter Burke, the Minister of State for Local Government, said the motion is “specifically designed to keep the story in the media.”

He said Leo Varadkar had already answered questions from the opposition on his actions in the Dáil.

“That is the forum to hold members to account,” he said. “He underwent two hours of questioning. He put his statement on the record and I think that should close the matter.

He insisted that it is now time to move on.

News cycle

“What is happening here is the opposition, specifically Sinn Féin is trying to lengthen this issue in the public news cycle,” he said.

“They are trying to deflect from their own misnomers and also what they are trying to do is, they are denying the Dáil valuable time to discuss such important issues that we are facing on the horizon.”

Minister Burke said Dáil time in the coming weeks should be devoted to coronavirus response and preparations for Brexit.

“Every week is so important between now and the end of the year and I think we would be best responding to those challenges,” he said.

“Because our society and our people are enduring huge uncertainty at the moment and I think “Governments and opposition should be working together with genuine proposals to respond to this uncertainty and not trying to go down a road of a hidden agenda that is going on here and responding to a drip-feed of information – which is unsightly and questions have to be asked about that as well at this stage.”


Share this article


Most Popular

Live: Title

Now playing

00:00:00 / 00:00:00
Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share


Up next

Episode title
Show
Duration

You currently have no podcasts in your queue.

Go to podcasts

On Air

The Tom Dunne Show

The Tom Dunne Show

22:00-00:00

Share

Up next

BEST OF NEWSTALK

BEST OF NEWSTALK

00:00-06:00

Share

BREAKFAST BRIEFING

BREAKFAST BRIEFING

06:00-06:30

Share

BREAKFAST BUSINESS

BREAKFAST BUSINESS

06:30-07:00

Share

NEWSTALK BREAKFAST

NEWSTALK BREAKFAST

07:00-09:00

Share

THE PAT KENNY SHOW

THE PAT KENNY SHOW

09:00-12:00

Share

LUNCHTIME LIVE

LUNCHTIME LIVE

12:00-14:00

Share

MONCRIEFF

MONCRIEFF

14:00-16:00

Share

THE HARD SHOULDER

THE HARD SHOULDER

16:00-19:00

Share

OFF THE BALL

OFF THE BALL

19:00-22:00

Share

THE TOM DUNNE SHOW

THE TOM DUNNE SHOW

22:00-00:00

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on