Shatter: I'm sorry
Justice Minister Alan Shatter has apologised to penalty-points whistleblowers John Wilson and Maurice McCabe in an address to the Dáil this afternoon.
Mr Shatter had previously said the men did not cooperate with a garda investigation into their claims of abuse of the penalty-points system, a statement which has proved incorrect.
The Minister told the Dáil this afternoon: “I have looked again at the information provided to me and considered the matter in detail.
“I previously stated on the Dáil record that I expected that Sgt McCabe would be interviewed during the course of the O’Mahony investigation and I note that he fully engaged with the Garda Inspectorate in the work undertaken by them to prepare the report which is the subject matter of today’s debate.
“I want to say very clearly that having re-examined the facts and further considered the matter, I believe that more should have been done during the course of the O’Mahony investigation to obtain information from...the whistleblowers.
“Further and better efforts could and should have been made to secure productive engagement with them in the investigation of their claims.
“I wish to correct the record of this house that the whistleblowers “did not cooperate with the garda investigations that took place”.
“I acknowledge this statement was incorrect. It was never my intention to mislead the house.
“I believe it is appropriate that I apologise to both and withdraw the statements that were made.
“It was never my intention to cause upset. If any upset was caused, I hope that my correcting the record of the Dáil will put that upset to rest.”
The apology and correction of the Dáil record eases pressure on the Minister, with Labour happy with the correction.
Read the Mnister's full statement here.