Gormley accused of ‘hiding’ docklands report

ENVIRONMENT Minister John Gormley was accused by the Opposition of hiding a report on the operations of the troubled Dublin Docklands Development Authority (DDDA) for political reasons.

Fine Gael reacted with suspicion after former Green Party Senator Déirdre de Búrca specifically mentioned the report in her resignation letter to her party leader, Mr Gormley.

“I am aware that you as minister have a key report in front of you from Dr Niamh Brennan on the issue of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority. I’m afraid I lack the confidence that the findings of this report will be acted on in the timely and appropriate manner that the public interest requires,” the letter said. Ms de Búrca said this was an example of how the party is seen to have “lost the courage of our convictions and have become no more than an obedient ‘add-on’ to Fianna Fáil”.

Mr Gormley ordered the report last September to examine issues of corporate governance and planning procedures at the agency, which has had a write-down of €186 million on its investments, mainly relating to its stake in the former Irish Glass Bottle site.

Mr Gormley said he received the report last week and insisted its contents, made up of two parts, will be published in full.

But Fine Gael environment spokesperson Phil Hogan, who has previously called for a full investigation in the DDDA, said Ms de Búrca’s letter “is a serious attack on the political motivation of John Gormley by one of his own”.

He said: “The Green Party leader is clearly involved in a process of secrecy and concealment with regard to the DDDA.”

Green Party TD Paul Gogarty said he did not know why Ms de Búrca raised the issue in her letter but that it was “interesting that she has thrown it in”.

A spokesperson for Mr Gormley said the report is being considered by the Attorney General and he has the “full intention to make the contents public as soon as is practicable”.

A statement issued by two local residents of the docklands Marie O’Reilly and Joe Mooney said the minister has “no honourable option but to release it immediately” and “address any issues highlighted”.

It said: “Any hesitancy on this matter can only lead to further questions, and heighten our concerns.”


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