The Zappone/Coveney controversy


Sir, – Instead of the usual rhetoric of “lessons to be learned”, I would like to know why senior civil servants did not raise a flag on what was clearly canvassing.

Politicians are transient, but a Civil Service that facilitates cronyism is more worrying. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 6.

Sir, – Unfortunately, the reason the “plain people of Ireland” are not too bothered by the Zappone affair is because the public have become so cynical about politicians that they are not surprised. But what happens if an up-and-coming populist party gets into power and starts putting their own cronies into positions of power? Come on, Fine Gael, you should be setting a better example. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.

Sir, – Regarding the unending media coverage of the supposed Zappone/Coveney controversy and the manufactured outrage in its wake, can I just add that I have never been more grateful for the retention of Lyric FM! – Yours, etc,



Co Longford.

Sir, – The threat by Sinn Féin to bring a motion of no confidence in Simon Coveney at this stage, which has no hope of success but which they hope will cause a split in the Government parties and bring about the fall of the Coalition, is pathetic and nothing short of political posturing at its worse.

With the country in the midst of a pandemic, a crisis in housing, and the effects of Brexit on the nation, they should show political maturity and not get involved in this type of political gameshow. Hopefully the electorate will see through them at the next election. – Yours, etc,



Co Kerry.

Sir, – I’ve been following the Katherine Zappone affair, but as far as I can tell it’s a great uproar about very little.

I’m no fan of her or the Government, but this seems like a chance to spend very little money and get a useful amount of expertise at the UN. Sinn Féin is going to complain about anything the Government does, regardless of what it is. It’s amazing to me that they have been able to dominate the news with this tempest in a teacup for so long. – Yours, etc,



Co Cork.

Sir, – Why is it necessary for our politicians to employ all these additional outsiders at great expense? Surely there are many highly qualified and very competent civil servants well able to fill these roles. – Yours, etc,



Co Monaghan.

A chara, – If it looks like lobbying, sounds like lobbying and reads like lobbying, then it probably was lobbying. – Is mise,



Co Wicklow.

Sir, – The business of Government seems to have become mired in an agricultural mess of late, with such words bandied about as “troughs”, “snouts”, “piglets”, “sloppiness”, “cock- and -bull”, and even Jim O’Callaghan’s choice of the word “silo” to describe how Fine Gael had conducted Government business with their Coalition partners, the Greens and Fianna Fáil. I wonder is all this a consequence of some of our politicians being cooped up during the pandemic?– Yours, etc,



Dublin 18.

Sir, – Statements, contradictions, denials and above all apologies – full, abject, unreserved! How many are just made in the hope of getting away with what has happened? The Zappone affair may not be world shattering, but it has revealed the cover-ups and lack of transparency that are taking place in Government.

Is the Taoiseach taking the easy way out by suggesting that the lack of respect shown to him and his office should now be disregarded and forgotten? Surely there must be consequences for such behaviour. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.

Sir, – Public service job advertisements in the newspapers used to carry the simple declaration “Canvassing will disqualify”. Is it time for it to be reintroduced in BLOCK CAPITALS? – Yours, etc,



Dublin 6.