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Reforming defamation laws is essential

Your article ‘Defamation laws — Promises must be fulfilled’ (Irish Examiner, Tuesday, May 3) highlights the vital need to maintain a free and unencumbered Press which, together with the Public Accounts Committee, represents the last bastion of democracy in this country.

If it was not for courageous and professional journalism scandal after scandal, both at Government and civic level, would be buried without public knowledge and at huge cost to society and civil liberties.

Legislation in this area will be a challenge and will, in all probability have to face down lobbying by the law society and their masters who, in recent times, managed to have legislation which threatened their interests watered down, protecting the ‘fat fees’ enjoyed by the higher echelons of the judiciary.

A free press, operating without one hand tied behind its back, is a crucial element in our efforts to achieve real democratic accountability.

Joe Brennan
Co Cork


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