Monthly Archives: May 2012

Senator Mark Daly asks the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade to come to the House to discuss the US-Ireland Alliance

Order of Business

17/5/12

Senator Mark Daly:

I ask the Deputy Leader to ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade to come to the House to discuss the US-Ireland Alliance. The Mitchell scholars programme is a great programme in honour of an extraordinary man but, unfortunately, the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade has been unable to get a definitive answer from the president of the US-Ireland Alliance on whether she will appear before the committee to talk about the role and work of the organisation. A letter was sent to her from the chairman of the committee, following a request by members on all sides and from both Houses that she appear before the committee to talk about the US-Ireland Alliance. I find it extraordinary that she would not reply in a clear manner that she is willing to appear. Many members have received invitations from her to attend an event in Dublin next week, which she will be at, yet she does not see fit to talk to the committee. She is most evasive and, rather than accept the invitation, she avoided giving a definitive answer.

Senator David Norris:

Surely that is a matter for the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Senator Mark Daly:

It is and it has come up twice, which is why I am asking for the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade to appear in the House seeing as the president of the US-Ireland Alliance will not indicate whether she will appear. The Irish taxpayer will give over €20 million to the programme—–

An Leas-Chathaoirleach:

The matter is more appropriate to the committee.

Senator Mark Daly:

The president has not indicated that she will appear before the committee. The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade is a member of the board of the US-Ireland Alliance and when he comes in he could explain why the president of the organisation will not indicate whether she will appear before the committee.

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Senator Daly reiterates the need for a debate on NAMA as a matter of urgency

Order of Business

15/5/12

Senator Mark Daly: Last week and weekend my colleague for Kerry, Senator Coghlan, debated NAMA. Last Sunday’s edition of the Sunday Independent ran a full front page story on NAMA.

Senator Paul Coghlan:The Senator cannot believe everything he reads in that newspaper.

Senator Mark Daly:I thank Senator Coghlan. While I agree with him that one cannot believe everything that one reads, he would be aware that his own leader, Deputy Enda Kenny, who is the Taoiseach, and he said that in June that he was concerned about NAMA and its operations.

Senator Paul Coghlan:He has expressed his fullest confidence in it, as has the Tánaiste.

An Cathaoirleach:Senator Daly please, without interruption.

Senator Mark Daly:If he was so full of confidence, he would not have raised the issue at a previous meeting of the British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly, which was held in Cork.

Senator Paul Coghlan: He explained all of that at the time.

Senator Mark Daly:He did explain it all at the time.

An Cathaoirleach:Does Senator Daly have a question for the Leader?

Senator Mark Daly:I have. I think we should debate NAMA and the bank resolution—–

Senator Paul Coghlan:The Senator should introduce a Bill during Private Members’ time.

An Cathaoirleach:We cannot have this Kerry saga continuing in this Chamber every week.

Senator Terry Leyden:Senator Coghlan is very sensitive about this issue.

An Cathaoirleach:Senator Daly, without interruption.

Senator Mark Daly I know my colleague from Kerry would—–

An Cathaoirleach:Does the Senator have a question for the Leader?

Senator Mark Daly:I have. I am suggesting that this issue should be debated as a matter of urgency. Fianna Fáil’s next Private Members’ time is three weeks away. Every time NAMA sells a property or an asset without openness or transparency, the Irish taxpayer loses hundreds of thousands of euro, if not millions of euro. NAMA and the Irish banks are agreeing deals at a cost to the Irish taxpayer.

Senator Paul Coghlan:Does the Senator know they are making profits on the deals they are doing?

Senator Mark Daly:With all due respect to the Senator, he is quite aware that the banks are making a loss.

An Cathaoirleach:The Senator is over time.

Senator Mark Daly:NAMA has taken over these loans at a loss to the banks in question. The Irish taxpayer is footing that bill, as Senator Coghlan is well aware.

Senator Paul Coghlan:The Senator is misleading the House again.

Senator Mark Daly:I ask Senator Coghlan, as the Fine Gael Whip in this House, to provide time for a debate on this issue as a matter of urgency.

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Filed under NAMA and Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Transparency Bill 2011

Senator Mark Daly welcomes the development of the British- Irish Parliamentary Assembly

Order of Business

15/5/12

Senator Mark Daly:I, like others, welcome the development of the British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly being in the Senate chamber. Like others, I have made proposals on The Gathering to the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Deputy Varadkar. I propose that members of the Irish overseas who are members of parliament in Westminster, America, Australia, New Zealand and, our fifth largest overseas community, Argentina, are brought back in 2013 to come to this chamber to discuss issues of relevance to our mutual communities and shared heritage.

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Child Abuse Investigation into Cork School as a result of Senator Mark Daly’s Speech in the Chamber

As a result of his speech in the Seanad on the 27th of July 2011 regarding allegations of Child Abuse at a boarding school in Cork three investigations were initiated.

Since information was given to the Senator, regarding a member of staff who may have been responsible for child abuse at a boarding school in Cork, he investigated the accusations for many months and assured himself that there was credible evidence and serious cause for concern. During his research Senator Daly uncovered that there were 7 allegations of alleged abuse in the school which were reported to the Gardai between 1996 and 2008 however no prosecutions was taken by the DPP. The Senator engaged with state agencies, victim support groups and the Missionary of the Sacred Heart to ensure that  vulnerable children were protected or possible victims of the alleged abusers received help .
Despite initially stating that they would do everything they could, it became evident that the order were more interested in protecting themselves rather than helping any one. It was only after the head of the Missionary’s of the Sacred Heart  refused to reach out to victims that Senator Daly took the extraordinary step of speaking in the Seanad and naming an alleged abuser. To date The National Council for Safeguarding Children have completed a preliminary inquiry into the Missionary of the Sacred Heart. The Health Service Executive are currently undertaking an investigation of the Order. The Gardai have a large team of detectives investigating the allegations made, which has lead to hopes that on this occasion the DPP will pursue a prosecution.

Senator Daly is working with victims and the relevant authorities to get counselling for the victims and pursue all legal options available.

Statement by Executive Director of the Child Abuse support organisation One in Four, Maeve Lewis following Senator Dalys Speech on the 27th July 2011

“Senator Daly was placed in an impossible position. He was contacted as a public representative by people who gave him plausible and compelling information that they had been abused by this person and that they had exhausted all possible legal avenues. Senator Daly had two choices: to do nothing and hope that another child would not be sexually abused or to act in order to protect children. I do not envy him this moral quandary. Ultimately, he decided to act. We are all well aware of the horrendous consequences of secrecy and silence therefore, in this particular instance, One in Four supports his decision.”

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Three arrests in school child sex inquiry

Allegations of physical and sexual abuse at the school first emerged when Fianna Fáil’s Mark Daly raised questions

By Sean O’Riordan and Claire O’Sullivan

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Three men have been arrested in connection with a major investigation into child sex abuse at a Co Cork school.

The arrests follow complaints made by nearly 20 former pupils of Sacred Heart College, Carrignavar.

Gardaí received the first of the complaints last August, when they were approached by a former boarder at the secondary school.

Two of the three men were arrested and questioned at Cobh Garda Station in Co Cork, while the third was detained in Dublin.

The three, described by Garda sources as “elderly”, were questioned in relation to allegations made by former pupils who claimed they had been sexually abused at the school in the 1970s, 1980s, and early 1990s, when it was run by the order of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart.

The complaints were made against four former members of staff, one of whom has since died.

Gardaí from Cobh and Glanmire have been involved in the lengthy investigation, along with detectives from the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation based at Harcourt Square, Dublin.

Some of the victims alleged that they were subjected to repeated abuse over some length of time, but gardaí said there was no evidence to suggest that they were passed around by their alleged abusers.

While some of the alleged victims still live in Cork, Kerry, and Limerick, others have moved to counties much further north. Gardaí travelled to interview them as part of their painstaking investigation.

They also travelled to interview other former pupils who the alleged victims said would substantiate their stories.

Some of the victims went to the gardaí after meeting counsellors from the One In Four support group, which helps people who have suffered from sexual abuse.

One In Four hosted a special counselling session in Cork last October to deal with allegations of child sex abuse at Carrignavar College.

Garda sources confirmed yesterday that the men were released without charge and that a file will be forwarded to the DPP.

The National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church has completed an audit of child protection practices within the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart late last year.

Whether the report will be made public or not depends upon the missionaries. They have indicated that they will not consider putting anything into the public domain until criminal investigations have concluded.

Last August, the HSE also began an investigation into child protection practices at the school.

The inquiry was ordered by Children’s Minister Frances Fitzgerald after the Irish Examiner was inundated with letters, phonecalls, and emails from former pupils who say they endured routine violence during their time at the then boarding school.

Allegations of physical and sexual abuse at the school first emerged when Fianna Fáil’s Mark Daly raised questions about the order’s supervision of a former teacher at the school who’d been the subject of numerous abuse allegations.

Settlements were made by the order in two civil cases taken against the priest.

Read more:

http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/three-arrests-in-school-child-sex-inquiry-193148.html#ixzz1uGENvRYx

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