Formal winding-up of PDs delayed for legal reasons


THE WINDING-UP of the Progressive Democrats, which was scheduled to take place today, has been postponed for legal reasons associated with deregistration and the submission of final accounts.

PD leader Senator Ciarán Cannon previously declared his intention to notify the Registrar of Political Parties (Clerk of the Dáil)Kieran Coughlan in early February that the party wished to be removed from the register as of the end of the month.

However as of yesterday no such application had been submitted. The process of winding up political parties is governed under the Electoral Acts 1992/2002.

A political party which wishes to be deregistered must write to the Registrar of Political Parties (Clerk of the Dáil) stating its wish to do so. The clerk then places a notice of this intention in the official State gazette, Iris Oifigiúil.

A further complication has arisen in that the party has to submit three statements to the Standards in Public Office Commission.

A statement of donations received in 2008 must be submitted by March 31st.

The PDs also currently receive €67,000 every quarter in State funding and an audited statement as to how this was spent also has to be submitted.

A third statement, which also must be audited, has to be submitted on the spending of the party leader’s allowance, which amounted to €185,000 last year.

The completed statements are displayed at the commission’s headquarters in Dublin’s Leeson Street, and on its website, for the following three years in case there is any objection.

Meanwhile a Labour spokesman confirmed that Mr Cannon had spoken to party leader Eamon Gilmore some time back about possible membership. “We have not heard anything from him since,” the spokesman said.

The National Library is now vying for the archive of the PDs, along with University College Dublin and the University of Limerick.

After it was reported that the two universities made presentations to the party’s national executive, the National Library also expressed an interest in acquiring the material collected over 22 years.

The PDs are considering which is the most appropriate destination for the archive.