Bradford calls for greater scrutiny to prevent topping up politicians’ pay

Debacle is ‘symtomatic of culture’ that existed for decades

“Let us be honest in asking what checks and balances exist in the legislation to prevent taxpayers’ money from being used to add to politicians’ salaries,’’ said FPaul Bradford (FG).

“Let us be honest in asking what checks and balances exist in the legislation to prevent taxpayers’ money from being used to add to politicians’ salaries,’’ said FPaul Bradford (FG).

Fri, Dec 13, 2013, 00:58

Greater scrutiny to prevent the use of public money to top up politicians’ pay was called for by Paul Bradford (FG).

He said legislation had been passed dealing with the funding of political parties. “Let us be honest in asking what checks and balances exist in the legislation to prevent taxpayers’ money from being used to add to politicians’ salaries,’’ he added. “There is absolutely nothing.’’

Mr Bradford said that what was “sauce for the goose was sauce for the gander’’ and a review was urgently required on how the Oireachtas conducted its political and private business.

He said he congratulated the Public Accounts Committee on the work it had done to investigate the debacle in the charities sector. “However, none of us should be surprised about this debacle because, tragically, what is being unearthed is symptomatic of a culture which existed in this country for decades,’’ he added. “This culture exhibits an unwillingness to organise business in a proper and transparent fashion.’’

Mr Bradford said there were tribunals with no outcomes, quangos which were to be abolished and top-ups of all kinds.

He added: “However, as we will not miraculously find a solution to this problem overnight, I appeal to the public to continue giving to the charitable organisations which have done such good work in this country.’’

He added that every euro withheld by the public would have to be replaced by the taxpayer if services to very needy people were not to be affected.

Catherine Noone (FG) said the Seanad should debate how charities were regulated. She added that the board of the Central Remedial Clinic should remain in place until the investigation into the top-up of salaries was completed and then resign immediately.