'Mission to Prey' not discussed by RTÉ board until four months post-broadcast

Chairman of the RTÉ board Tom Savage has said that the board first discussed the programme which resulted in the libelling of Fr Kevin Reynolds in September of last year.

The 'Prime Time Investigates' show was broadcast four months earlier, in May.

Following a meeting with Communications Minister Pat Rabbitte yesterday, the board of RTÉ agreed to make a submission to the Government within a week, setting out what actions they propose to take to ensure there is no repeat of the affair in the future.

Mr Savage insists that as soon as the programme became a major issue, the board was informed.

"There many issues which cause ripples externally, with people complaining… or whatever," he said.

"But we only hear about it when it actually becomes a real issue internally.

"And that's exactly the process that happened - it wasn't that we were being kept in the dark.

"As soon as it became a major issue… then we were informed."

Meanwhile the Taoiseach has backed calls from the Fianna Fáil leader for an Oireachtas inquiry into public service broadcasting.

Micheál Martin this morning called for a special committee to be established, - but Enda Kenny said he believes that's not necessary.

"I don't see any reason why a sub-committee of the Oireachtas committee cannot deal with these issues," Mr Kenny said.

"I think this is in the interests of all our people and I will make the recommendation known to the chairman."

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