Friday 19 January 2018

Gardai union stands by its claim that Callinan was forced out of his job

GRA leader PJ Stone
GRA leader PJ Stone

The organisation that represents more than 10,000 rank-and-file gardai has said that former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan was effectively sacked by the government.

A spokesman for the Garda Representative Association (GRA) told the Herald last night that the organisation's stance on Mr Callinan's dramatic resignation has not changed since the publication of the Fennelly Report into the affair this week.

The GRA said it stood by its assertion that Mr Callinan was "forced out of his job" by the Government.


"We are still reading and digesting the contents of the Fennelly Report and we have not had time to give it a full, considered discussion," a spokesman said.

"However, our initial impression is that our original view on this matter remains consistent.

"We made our views plain at the time and our general secretary said at the time that the previous commissioner was effectively forced out of his job."

GRA leader PJ Stone commented on the case in April of last year and said Mr Callinan had been removed on a political whim.

He said the long-serving commissioner had been treated in a disgraceful way as the head of the police force.

Asked if Mr Callinan had been sacked by politicians, Mr Stone said the former commissioner was "removed from office" and that it was "obvious to everybody".


"The gentleman was given no option or no choice in my view," the association's general secretary said at its annual conference in Killarney last year.

"If you dispatch a head of a department after a political meeting, one can only conclude that there had to be political interference.

Mr Stone said at the time that it was not necessary for him to spell out in detail who had removed Mr Callinan from his position.

He said Mr Callinan's removal clearly illustrated to him that the force was subject to political whim.

He said politicians were responsible for appointing the commissioner and "at the end of the day, that is not a good place to be either".

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