De Búrca: ‘I was assured promise of Green post’

FORMER Green senator Deirdre de Búrca said party leader John Gormley had assured her the Taoiseach promised a Green choice in the inner circle of Ireland’s new EU commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn in return for the party supporting the appointment.

Hitting back at claims she had promised to “damage” the Greens if she did not get a plum European job, Ms de Búrca said the two Green ministers withdrew support for Pat Cox for the commission as part of the deal, but they failed to make Brian Cowen stick to the agreement.

“John Gormley told me clearly he had negotiated a position for a Green in her new cabinet as a basic condition of Green Party support for her (Geoghegan-Quinn’s) nomination.

“John told me that Brian Cowen had telephoned Máire Geoghegan-Quinn last November and made her aware of this condition before she was officially nominated... He told me that she had agreed because she was very interested in the nomination,” Ms de Búrca said in a statement.

The ex-senator, who is remaining in the Green Party though she has resigned from the parliamentary party, said Mr Gormley offered her an alternate post within the Court of Auditors, but she had turned this down.

“I encouraged him [Mr Gormley] to insist on the agreement being honoured but he told me that he was powerless to do so,” she said.


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