Kenny facing fresh calls to appear before Justice Committee

The Taoiseach is facing fresh calls to appear before the Justice Committee to give his version of events surrounding the departure of Martin Callinan as Garda Commissioner.

Fianna Fail's Niall Collins said Enda Kenny, Alan Shatter and Mr Callinan should all be asked to attend a hearing.

His comments come as major reforms are expected at the Department of Justice, after the departure of its Secretary General yesterday.

Brian Purcell stepped down saying his position was untenable after an external review said the department of justice had a "closed, secretive and silo-driven culture" with ineffective management.

Deputy Collins, a member of the Justice Committee, said previous calls for Kenny, Shatter, and Callinan to appear answer their questions were rejected because the Fennelly Inquiry is ongoing.

"What can you not tell the justice committee that you'll be telling [the inquiry]? There's nothing!" he said.

"You can come in and tell the truth, and if you tell the truth as it is, you have nothing to fear.

"It has been a very disturbing episode."

Alan Shatter and Martin Callinan also face calls to appear.

The Chair of the Justice Committee, Fine Gael's David Stanton, said whoever is chosen as Brian Purcell's successor will have to oversee major reforms in the Department.

"Being an open competition means that it can be ... someone from outside. My guess is it would be an outsider. But I don't know.

"We'll have to see who applies, we'll have to see what structure is put in place to actually appoint [them], and ... we remain open on that one."

"But certainly, we'll need a new direction."

The Minister for Justice, Frances Fitzgerald, is also expected to answer questions before the Committee.

She has defended the two weeks it took to publish the 22-page document after she received it, saying she did so as quickly as she could, having considered it.

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