Donegal TD calls for Garda chief to step aside over McCabe

Deputy Doherty described the false allegations made against Sgt McCabe as “vile and disgusting”.

By Declan Magee

Reporter:

By Declan Magee

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editorial@donegaldemocrat.com

The garda commissioner has written a letter to all serving members

Garda Commissioner, Noreen O'Sullivan

Donegal TD Pearse Doherty has labelled the revelations surrounding the case of Garda whistleblower Maurice McCabe as “absolutely appalling” as he called for the Garda commissioner to step aside.

The Sinn Féin TD last night reiterated the party’s position for Noreen O'Sullivan to step aside while a commission of investigation is carried out into allegations that senior gardaí engaged in an orchestrated campaign to discredit Sgt McCabe.

Over the weekend the HSE apologised for the false sex abuse allegation made against him.

Sgt McCabe rejected the apology.

Deputy Doherty described the false allegations made against Sgt McCabe as “vile and disgusting”.

He said the government's version of events surrounding the false allegations made against Sgt McCabe as “lacking credibility” and said the situation was “absolutely appalling”.

He told the Donegal Democrat: “They have made a complete and utter mess of it and they have lost the confidence of the Sinn Féin party,” he said.

Deputy Doherty said the party would be tabling a no confidence motion against the government in the Dáil this week.

He said the Garda commissioner, while innocent until proven guilty, must step aside while the allegations are probed by the commission of investigation led by the Supreme Court judge Mr Justice Peter Charleton.

Deputy Doherty said such allegations against any other garda would see them suspended while the investigation was carried out.

“There are serious allegations in relation to how the Garda commissioner has conducted herself and there is no doubt that she has to stand aside,” he said.

“Everybody is innocent until proven guilty, 100 per cent, but these allegations have warranted a commission of investigation to be established.

“This is not pub talk or idle speculation. This is very serious and has warranted the setting up of an investigation into what goes to the very heart of how the commissioner has conducted herself around people who have alleged wrongdoing inside the force.”

The Donegal TD accused both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil of “providing cover” for the commissioner.

“It is unacceptable for them to suggest there is no need for her to step aside,” he said.

Donegal Fine Gael TD and minister of state Joe McHugh could not be contacted for comment yesterday.

Donegal Fianna Fáil TD Pat ‘the Cope’ Gallagher declined to comment on the situation last night.

“As far as I am concerned the (Fianna Fáil) parliamentary party is to meet on Wednesday and we will have an opportunity to discuss it then. The view that I have will be expressed in there,” he said.

Attempts to contact Fianna Fáil TD Charlie McConalogue and independent TD Thomas Pringle were unsuccessful.