Latest: Howlin says confidence is expressed in Garda Commissioner with 'increasing reluctance'

Latest: Howlin says confidence is expressed in Garda Commissioner with 'increasing reluctance'

Update 11.08am: Labour leader Brendan Howlin has said members of the Government are expressing confidence in the Garda Commissioner with "increasing reluctance".

Brendan Howlin said he doesn't think the general public will tolerate the ongoing saga, of the top administration of Garda being "so unaccountable".

Mr Howlin said we cannot have a situation where there is a fear that doing the right thing will lead to a general election.

He added that we also cannot have a situation where we have a dysfunctional Dáil and Government, and critical institutions like the policing of the State go 'unanswered for political fears.'

He told Today with Sean O'Rourke on RTÉ Radio 1 the leadership of An Garda Siochána isn't in crisis management mode but "crisis reaction mode".

Mr Howlin said he was profoundly worried about the way Brexit negotiations were unfolding and the hard lines being taken by the EU and the British Prime Minister.

He said he will tell Commissioner Barnier that the impact of Brexit on Ireland is fundamental, that the uniqueness of the impact of Britain's exit has to be identified and concrete proposals and actions are needed to minimise the damage, as much as possible.

Earlier: A legal expert is warning that the Garda Commissioner's failure to inform the Government of finance problems at the Templemore training college will have 'no consequences'.

It has been revealed that Noirín O'Sullivan only informed the Justice Minister of the issues in October 2016, despite a recommendation to do so in July 2015.

Opposition parties have accused the Commissioner of breaking the rule around sharing information with the Government, known as 'Section 41' .

Latest: Howlin says confidence is expressed in Garda Commissioner with 'increasing reluctance'

Criminal law specialist Dara Robinson says what she did may be a crime, but she probably won't face any legal backlash.

"Oddly enough, there doesn't appear to be a consequence in the sense that many of the obligations that are imposed on An Garda Siochána and in respect of which there are breaches, actually are criminal offences and they're much more minor matters by large, but there's no sanction proposed in Section 41," he said.

The Garda Commissioner could be forced to appear before the Public Accounts Committee again within a week.

Noirín O'Sullivan's next appearance was due to take place in July, however fresh controversy over financial irregularities at the Garda training college looks set to change that.

PAC Chairman Sean Fleming says it is time this issue was dealt with, once and for all.

"In July 2015 she became aware of this, she set up a working group, and internal audit followed.

"Some of the recommendations have been implemented, most of them have not yet been implemented and we're almost two years down the road.

"So there's been long enough for it to have been dealt with, if there was a determination to deal with this matter promptly it would have been concluded before now and there isn't sufficient determination to conclude these matters in my opinion," he said.

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