VIDEO: Fianna Fáil politician featured in RTÉ exposé resigns

By Daniel McConnell, Political Editor

Fianna Fáil has tonight accepted the resignation of Cllr Joe Queenan after he was secretly filmed by RTÉ Prime Time investigates.

The hard-hitting documentary, presented by former Irish Examiner Correspondent Conor Ryan, detailed Cllr Queenan and other local politicians appearing to agree to lobby on behalf of a dummy company in exchange for cash or the promise of cash.

In a statement tonight, Fianna Fáil said: “Following the Primetime Investigates Standards in Public Office programme, tonight the Party has accepted the resignation of Cllr Joe Queenan”.

The statement went on to say that "some of the behaviour displayed in tonight's programme was shocking and completely unacceptable.

"The instances where there appear to be clear breaches of the law need to be fully investigated by the Gardaí and prosecutions brought where appropriate.

"Separately, in respect of any allegations that were made against current members of Fianna Fáil, the Party will immediately commence an internal inquiry under the auspices of the Ard Chomhairle to establish the full facts in each instance and will take action as appropriate.

"Fianna Fáil expects the highest standards from its public representatives. There is absolutely no tolerance within the party for any breaches of such standards."

Independent Donegal Councillor John O'Donnell was also filmed.

He has said that he was acting as a "businessman" and has denied any wrong-doing.

Earlier, Monaghan Cllr Hugh McElvaney, who was filmed asking directly for money said he knew he was being set up.

Cllr Hugh McElvaney requested the £10,000 Sterling to assist a company with planning permission for the windfarm after being approached by a "UK businesswoman".

However, Mr McElvaney has claimed that he knew the woman was an undercover reporter from the moment the telephone conversation began.

"I knew I was being set up...I lured her into my trap," he told the Joe Finnegan show on Northern Sound radio this morning.

A recording of the Monaghan politician asking for "sterling on the table" is to be aired tonight as part of an 'RTÉ Investigates' documentary focusing on the ethical standards of politicians.

"It was dirty tricks on behalf of somebody."

He said he decided to play along with it because otherwise there "would be no show".

"And I wouldn't have the opportunity of showing RTÉ up, our State broadcaster, for what they are," he said on the radio show.


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