Labour seeks clarification of Cowen FÁS comments

The Labour Party is calling on the Taoiseach to clarify the legal basis for the €1m golden handshake given to former FÁS boss Rody Molloy.

Last week, the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee heard that Mr Molloy was artificially granted an extra 4.5 years of public service in order to top up his pension.

He resigned last November amid controversy over lavish expenses claims by FÁS officials.

The secretary general of the Department of Enterprise told the PAC last week that Mr Molloy threatened legal action unless he was treated "reasonably".

However, Brian Cowen said yesterday that there was no threat of legal action and the increased payment to Mr Molloy was in line with existing guidelines and legislation.

Labour TD Roisin Shortall says she has looked into the matter and cannot find any legislation that gives a government minister the right to spend an additional €1m on a particular individual's pension.

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