08 April 2008

FF Dinosaur appears before Mahon Tribunal

The Mahon Tribunal at Dublin Castle has continued with its investigation into planning irregularities and corruption.
It heard evidence today from one of
Fianna Fáil's real old dinosaurs of the Haughey era, the 68-year-old former EU Commissioner and cabinet minister Padraig Flynn.
He confirmed that he
had more than £ 71,000 in a non-resident account in London, but said he has no records to back up his evidence that "over half of this was spent on election expenses".

Most of the money in the AIB account in England came from the £ 50,000 the developer Tom Gilmartin gave to Flynn and which, he says, was "a personal political donation".

The long-time senior Fianna Fáil politician and former Minister for Justice, whose
backwards-looking arch-conservative and misogynist attitudes earned him the nickname "Flynn-stone", told the Tribunal that the "external account" in an AIB branch in London was opened by his wife, Dorothy, "using an address in which the couple never lived".

He said that withdrawals totaling £ 37,000 were spent on election expenses, but he has no records. A further £ 35,000 went on "investments in National Irish Bank" handled by his daughter, Beverley Flynn (right). This is the same Beverley Flynn who is still a TD, was re-admitted into FF a day before Bertie Ahern announced his resignation, and immediately stated that she would like to be a minister. Some people really have necks that would look too large on bulls or elephants...

Padraig Flynn denied today that all the investment money for the
National Irish Bank came from withdrawals from this AIB account. He says some of the money came "from cash savings in his safe at home". So it appears that the Taoiseach is not the only Fianna Fáil politician who deals a lot in cash. The whole party seems to have a habit of grabbing and stacking money where ever it becomes available.

In other European countries this would be seen as corruption and inappropriate, but in Ireland - and especially in
Fianna Fáil - it is perceived as "the lads having some fun". And whatever else he did or did not, Padraig Flynn was certainly a very active member of the inner circle of the FF lads...

The Emerald Islander

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