RTÉ – crisis and governance

In search of a more consistent approach

Sir, – I see that the Minister for the Arts and Media has declared that it would be “inappropriate” for the former secretary general of the Department of Media to appear before the Oireachtas Media Committee on the basis that the latter has retired (News, February 27th), yet there is outrage from politicians that former RTÉ personnel won’t appear before the Public Accounts Committee.

Wouldn’t a more consistent approach from politicians give them more credibility and give the public a little more confidence in them? – Yours, etc,




Co Wexford.

Sir, – How lucky this Government was last March to have a chairwoman of Siún Ní Raghallaigh’s integrity and ability to steer the embattled RTÉ through rising storms. She had created (with Cathal Goan) TG4, managed and reversed the failing fortunes of Ardmore Studios, and was instrumental in giving Troy Studios to Limerick. In other words, she is a person of proven judgment and broad-ranging experience. She knows what she’s doing. She is liked and trusted by people who work in television and film, here and abroad.

I would like to think that those we trust in public service work just as hard, know their brief just as well, do their homework just as properly and, after last Thursday’s Prime Time, have the courage to admit to shooting themselves in the foot. Sadly, in Ireland, we have a tendency among public and political servants, in moments of crisis, to circle the wagons and, shamefully, to forget facts in favour of defending a morally bankrupt status quo. – Yours, etc,



Co Galway.

Sir, – Hearing on RTÉ's Liveline on Monday last that a taxi driver had phoned to say he had the violin that had been left in the back of his taxi a few weeks before by a cash-paying customer (after the owner’s mother had spoken to Joe Duffy on air about the lost instrument which was of huge sentimental value to all her family) was a ray of sunshine between the black storm clouds hanging over Montrose. In the interest of balance, I would suggest that all involved be called before the Oireachtas Media Committee to answer questions on the irrepressible magic of RTÉ radio. The violin should also make an appearance! – Yours, etc,


Dublin 6.

Sir, – It occurs to me that it may not be possible to find someone who is both intelligent enough to effectively chair the board of RTÉ and foolish enough to take on the role. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 15.

Sir, – Chairing the RTÉ board? Not for love nor money. Not for all the tea in China. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 7.