Console's founder Paul Kelly asked to return People of the Year award

Console's founder Paul Kelly asked to return People of the Year award

Paul Kelly is being asked to return his People of the Year award.

The former chief executive of Console was forced to resign after a HSE audit revealed financial irregularities at the national suicide charity between 2012 and 2014.

He was awarded a People of the Year award in 2014 for his suicide prevention work.

In a statement this afternoon the organisers of the event, Rehab, said on foot of these recent revelations and queries from the public they have written to Paul Kelly (pictured), asking him to return the award.

The group said it had done so in order to "protect the standing and integrity of the awards".

"The value and esteem of the Awards is based on the high regard that the people of Ireland have for the award recipients and the fact that each of the winners is nominated by members of the public," the statement said.

It also made clear that this decision is no reflection on the many volunteers and fundraisers who, through Console, have helped many thousands of people bereaved by suicide, as the award was made to Paul Kelly personally.

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