CRC donors have right to see where money went - Gilmore

Tánaiste stops short of calling on Paul Kiely to return €742,000 payoff from charity

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore today said people who gave money to the Central remedial Clinic have a right to see where it was spent. Photograph: Frank Miller / The Irish Times.

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore today said people who gave money to the Central remedial Clinic have a right to see where it was spent. Photograph: Frank Miller / The Irish Times.

Sun, Jan 19, 2014, 13:34

People who gave money to the Central Remedial Clinic have a right to see where it was spent, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore said today.

Asked if he believed so called “top-up” payments to senior executives should be returned, Mr Gilmore said the first move would be “to establish what these payments were for” and he noted the twin HSE and Garda interest in payments to former CRC chief executive Paul Kiely.

But Mr Gilmore stopped short of calling for Mr Kiely to hand back all or part of his retirement package worth €742,000.

Mr Gilmore said the Public Accounts Committee was actively investigating the payment, adding that “the Government itself set out to find out what is going on here” in relation to “these top up payments”.

Speaking to reporters in Dublin, Mr Gilmore said “there has to be public accountability for the people who want to see where their money is going”.

He said he was thinking particularly of “people who have made contributions to charitable organisations and who I think have a right to see the money they have paid is going to the provision of the services” for which they had made the donations.

Mr Gilmore was commenting after Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said “on the face of it”, Mr Kiely should return the money, which amounted to about half the sum collected by CRC fundraisers in a year.

Minister for Health James Reilly also called for the money to be returned. Mr Reilly said the Government would use all available options open to it, including corporate enforcement and the Garda and the civil courts, to try and get the money back.

He said what had happened was “quite shameful” and there was a determination that the system be cleaned up and “we have transparency”.