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Big losers exit with huge payoffs

THEY were rejected by voters and now Fianna Fail's TD failures will pick up gigantic Golden Goodbyes.

Mary Coughlan, Brian Cowen, Mary Hanafin, John O'Donoghue and Sean Haughey will receive quarter of a million euro payoffs, with massive pension pots on top.

The Herald can also reveal that party leader Micheal Martin now plans to flood the Senate with election rejects, in more Fianna Fail cronyism.

Before the election, Dermot Ahern and Noel Dempsey became millionaires when they walked away from politics with massive cash payments, and pensions worth up to €6m.

With the country effectively bankrupt, the payments will leave a lasting bad taste amongst a public disgusted at how Fianna Fail can be rewarded for such incompetence.

Dick Roche, Mary O'Rourke, Pat Carey, Sean Power and Barry Andrews are among those who will receive six-figure payments. The Herald today can reveal how Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin also hopes to compensate the flops Averil Power and Mary Fitzpatrick -- by making them senators.

One of the biggest failures of the last regime, Mary Coughlan, will pick up both a TD pension of €49,200 and ministerial pension of €54,315, checking in with an astonishing €104,000. She will also get a pension lump sum of €148,000.


To tide her over, she will get a termination payment of €16,404 tax free and further payments worth over €61,000 in the coming year. O'Donoghue, the former Ceann Comhairle who was forced to resign, will get a package worth an astonishing €334,000.

Likewise, Mary Hanafin, who lost her Dun Laoghaire seat to Richard Boyd Barrett, will pick up over €324,000.

The former Green Party Cabinet ministers, John Gormley and Eamon Ryan, and former junior ministers Ciaran Cuffe and Mary White, will also qualify for severance payments.

However, Mr Gormley and Mr Ryan have promised to give their payments to charity and to the Green Party.

Former Fianna Fail ministers who held their seats won't be taking severance payments under leader Micheal Martin's new policy. He gave up his €88,000 severance payment after it became an issue during the election campaign. Brian Lenihan, Brendan Smith, Eamon O Cuiv and Billy Kelleher are expected to do the same.