By Patrick Brogan
As reported by the Irish Examiner today, the Public Accounts Committee are set to investigate spending by the Presidential Office. The motion was tabled by PAC chair Sean Fleming. Many see this as a politically motivated move so close to the election.
The office has spent nearly €50million since Michael D Higgins was elected in 2011. After requests to investigate the spending, Martin Fraser, the Department of the Taoiseach Secretary-General, said it is politically motivated and will damage the credibility of the election. The review is to take place on Tuesday, a day before the nominations close. It is said to take place on this day so it will not interfere with the campaigns. However, the move has split the PAC down the middle with vice-chair Alan Kelly of Labour describing the timing as rubbish.
Is it not good to know what this money was spent on before the election? It might well be politically motivated, but are the people not entitled to know what tax-payer money was spent on? Indeed, investigations of this sort are not common enough.
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