Passport controversy: Roche attacks Opposition

Minister for European Affairs Dick Roche has mounted an attack on the Opposition this morning for raising fresh questions about the Taoiseach's credibility.

Minister for European Affairs Dick Roche has mounted an attack on the Opposition this morning for raising fresh questions about the Taoiseach's credibility.

Fine Gael has demanded that Bertie Ahern answer questions about his relationship with Norman Turner after it emerged that a passport for Manchester businessman Norman Turner was channelled through his (Mr Ahern's) office while he was Minister for Finance in 1994.

Mr Turner, the man behind the failed plan to build a casino in the Phoenix Park, gave $10,000 to Fianna Fáil the same year.

Asked about the matter this morning, Mr Roche insisted there was nothing wrong with Mr Ahern helping Mr Turner to get a passport.

Mr Turner was entitled to an Irish passport because his mother was Irish.

He claimed the Opposition was just trying to stir up trouble for the Government.

Mr Roche also insisted that he had full trust in the Taoiseach.

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