Public Accounts Committee seeking answers on Rehab’s affairs

Flannery and Kerins yet to indicate appearance before committee

Angela Kerins, former Rehab chief executive

Angela Kerins, former Rehab chief executive

Sat, Apr 5, 2014, 01:01


The Public Accounts Committee remains uncertain as to whether former Rehab leaders Frank Flannery and Angela Kerins will attend a key hearing next Thursday on the affairs of the disability organisation.

Mr Flannery, who resigned his Rehab directorship last month and a political role within Fine Gael, has yet to make his decision.

The intentions of Ms Kerins are equally unclear. She finished her work as chief executive yesterday, having resigned on Wednesday.

PAC members are adamant the resignations change nothing in terms of the questions they wish to put to Ms Kerins and Mr Flannery, who was also her immediate predecessor as chief executive.

Rehab chairman Brian Kerr has written to each asking if they will attend the PAC meeting next week. It is understood there has been no response from Ms Kerins and none is expected until next week.

While Mr Flannery said he was still considering his position, he said he was seeking to co-operate with the PAC. “I have not made up my mind but I’m working on finding a way to co-operate with the committee if I can,” he said.

At issue for the PAC, among other questions, are Mr Flannery’s retirement package and Ms Kerins’s pay and bonuses.

The committee also wishes to query Rehab’s involvement in a failed 2010 coffin-making venture with a firm co-owned by Ms Kerins’s husband, brother and Mr Flannery.

In a letter to the PAC two days ago, Mr Kerr said he and four other board and management figures will attend the hearing. Mr Kerr is understood to have asked the PAC to give Rehab, before the meeting, “any additional information” in relation to the organisation which is available to the committee. Rehab receives annual payments of more than €82 million from the State.

Mr Kerr said he understood Rehab was invited to the committee for an examination of funding by the HSE, Department of Justice, training agency Solas and other Government departments.

PAC members have complained Ms Kerins gave only partial answers to certain questions at a seven-hour hearing of the committee in February.