herald

Tuesday 17 October 2017

Shatter is silent after Gay goes on attack

ALAN Shatter was remaining tight-lipped last night after Gay Byrne accused him of being responsible for a lack of road safety resources.

The veteran broadcaster suggested that Noel Brett quit as chief executive of the Road Safety Authority (RSA) last week because he was "frustrated".

And he warned that progress in road safety in recent years could be lost due to a lack of State resources.

The former Late Late Show host pointed the finger of blame at Minister Shatter, whose department controls the coffers of the Garda Traffic Corps. "Last year was the most successful year in terms of fatalities, but it looks like now... all the gains we've made in the last six or seven years are being lost. That is why I'm frustrated and angry," he said.

"It appears that [Transport Minister] Leo Varadkar, who is my minister, is an extremely able guy, very committed to what he is doing, and has delivered anything that we asked him to. But he is completely subservient to Alan Shatter."

It is the second time in days that the TV host has been critical of Mr Shatter.

 

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Last week he said that Mr Shatter "has about as much interest in road safety as I do in snipe shooting". Mr Shatter strongly denied that charge.

The claims about a lack of resources were put to Mr Shatter last night, but he did not answer. Mr Byrne added that he was "broken-hearted" after RSA chief Noel Brett announced that he was stepping down to take up a post with the Irish Banking Federation.

But he himself said he would not resign from his position of chairman of the RSA, adding that he would not be "throwing my toys out of the pram".

noconnor@herald.ie

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