Taoiseach receives report into Maria Bailey claims controversy

Varadkar says he has discussed with TD and will not publish due to anonymity

Maria Bailey’s  withdrawn action against the Dean Hotel in Dublin  alleged she had suffered injuries after falling from a swing in the hotel bar in July 2015. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Maria Bailey’s withdrawn action against the Dean Hotel in Dublin alleged she had suffered injuries after falling from a swing in the hotel bar in July 2015. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

 

A report into the controversy over a compensation claim made by Fine Gael TD Maria Bailey has been received by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar who intends to address the issue next week.

Mr Varadkar has met Ms Bailey since receiving the report compiled by senior counsel David Kennedy on Thursday. The Taoiseach said it will not be published as Mr Kennedy interviewed people on the basis that his work would remain private.

A source said Ms Bailey was “upset” that the controvery over her now withdrawn claim is ongoing. She is expected to speak to Mr Varadkar before any further statements on the matter are made.

Fine Gael asked Mr Kennedy to “establish all the facts” around Ms Bailey’s action against the Dean Hotel in Dublin, where she alleged she suffered injuries after falling from a swing in a bar in July 2015.

Speaking previously about the claim, Ms Bailey said she wanted her medical expenses reimbursed. She said that when the incident happened, she had a bottle of beer in her hand while she was on the swing and was reaching for a friend’s bottle of wine.

Sources said Fine Gael party is keen to deal with the matter in a “firm” but “fair” way.

“In terms of the publishing the report, it is not normal for a political party or even a media organisation or an employer to publish an internal report,” he told reporters in Co Longford on Friday.

“I did consider making an exception in this regard, but when I met with David Kennedy he pointed out to me that he sought the cooperation of those who were interviewed for the report on the basis that it would not be published.”

There have been calls within the party for the lawyer’s findings to be made public as some members believe the controversy affected Fine Gael’s local and European election performance.

Mr Varadkar said he intended to respond to the report and his meeting with Ms Bailey next week. He has indicated that he will be ordering all future Fine Gael election candidates to disclose their involvement in any legal proceedings in the wake of the controversy.