A new Garda head

 

A chara, – The Government’s announcement of the appointment of Drew Harris as the new Commissioner of the Garda Síochána could not have been more badly timed, coming as it does on the very day when the supreme court In London is considering the appeal of Mrs Geraldine Finucane against the refusal of the British government to hold a public inquiry into the murder of her husband.

I am confident there will be a time when appointments like this can be made, and accepted, with the approval of the public, especially those who believe in policing by consent. That time has not yet arrived.

Deputy Chief Constable Harris was a serving officer in the Royal Ulster Constabulary at a time when, no matter how often it may be denied, there was widespread collusion between the police and the British army that involved the unlawful killing of innocent, mainly nationalist and Catholic, men and women. Clearly he was not involved in any such criminal conduct, but will the public perceive him as a fair and impartial bystander in historic cases which are still unsolved? – Yours, etc,

MICHAEL O’CONNELL,

Kimberley, Notts, UK.