Kenny says he would have fired former Fás head


Enda Kenny has said he would have fired Fás director-general Rody Molloy for incompetency.

Speaking during a Lisbon referendum canvass on Dun Laoghaire Pier today Mr Kenny accused the Government of “hiding behind the process” involved in awarding a €1 million 'golden handshake' to Mr Molloy to induce him to resign.

Mr Kenny said “in view of the incompetence of the former director general of Fas, I would have sacked him and I would have allowed the law to take its course”.

At a meeting of the Public Accounts Committee earlier this week, it was revealed thata decision was taken to give Mr Molloy a generous severance package. The former director general’s length of service was increased by an extra four-and-a-half nominal years, which increased the size of his lump sum payment by approximately €50,000 and his annual pension by about €11,000 per annum.

The actuarial total cost of the deal, on a presumption that Mr Molloy lived for another 30 years, was €1 million. No legal advice was sought before the decision was agreed.

Mr Kenny said the issue showed a disconnect between those who agree to such terms and large numbers of people who had been made redundant with very little benefits.

“In Waterford the other day I met former Waterford Crystal workers who had worked for 40 years, with no pension. And the question they asked was, does anybody up in Government understand the extent of anger when they see people who prove not to be competent being rewarded with very heavy pay-offs?”

The opposition leader also repeated his call for Mr Cowen to seek a mandate for his leadership, and warned there were many “banana skins” ahead including Nama, the Budget, the revised programme for Government and relations between Fianna Fail and the Green Party.

“When the Taoiseach was elected last year I made the point that he should seek a mandate and my point is that a general election will clear the air and will give a new mandate to a new Government.”

Mr Kenny added “there may be other potential banana skins in there that haven’t even been acknowledged yet.”