FF has no plans to discipline Ó Cuív


FIANNA FÁIL has no plans to take disciplinary action in the course of the referendum campaign against Galway West TD Éamon Ó Cuív.

Mr Ó Cuív yesterday openly called for a No vote on the fiscal treaty but this was quickly rejected by party leader Micheál Martin.

A Fianna Fáil spokesman pointed out that Mr Ó Cuív had already lost his position as deputy leader and member of the front bench over the treaty issue.

“The Fianna Fáil party will now be running a national campaign to promote a Yes vote which will be launched on Thursday,” the spokesman said.

Asked if the party intended to take further disciplinary action against Mr Ó Cuív, the spokesman said: “We’re not going to do anything that distracts from the campaign.”

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore said this was not the first time Mr Ó Cuív had taken a stance at odds with his party leadership in a referendum.

“He wasn’t on message in previous treaties either. As I recall, he voted against Lisbon,” Mr Gilmore said.

Mr Ó Cuív told Raidió na Gaeltachta that the treaty was “a bad bargain”.

Asked if he would be voting No in the referendum, he said: “I am advising people to vote against.”

“The advice I am giving is clear, I lost the deputy leadership of Fianna Fáil, a position that was a great honour for me personally. I lost that and my place on the front bench. I am the only backbencher Fianna Fáil has at the moment.

“Be that as it may, I am working away. But I strongly believe Enda Kenny and Eamon Gilmore have made a very bad deal over in Brussels and as things are at the moment we could not support the fiscal treaty,” he added.

Mr Martin said he was satisfied all other Fianna Fáil TDs and Senators would toe the party line.

He said he believed “the majority” within the parliamentary party and the party generally has consistently been for the treaty.

Other party sources said privately there was considerable sympathy for Mr Ó Cuív’s position.