Parties accused of ‘circling wagons’ around Limerick Metro Mayor

Nick Rabbitts

Reporter:

Nick Rabbitts

Motion: Cllr Cian Prendiville
FIANNA Fail and Fine Gael have been accused of “circling the wagons” around the metropolitan district mayor over his involvement in a road accident.

FIANNA Fail and Fine Gael have been accused of “circling the wagons” around the metropolitan district mayor over his involvement in a road accident.

Anti-Austerity Alliance (AAA) councillor Cian Prendiville hopes to make another bid at the next metropolitan district meeting to get Cllr Jerry O’Dea to make a statement on the national newspaper allegations.

A report in The Sunday Times - followed up in the Irish Independent - alleged Cllr O’Dea contacted gardai in advance of his election as metropolitan mayor seeking clarification on whether he was likely to be charged with a criminal offence, a move which has led to an internal inquiry in the force.

Now, Cllr Prendiville has lodged a formal notice of motion to the next meeting - on November 23 - calling on the mayor to make a statement “refuting the serious allegations”.

The meeting agenda will be finalised in the coming days - although under standing orders, it will be Cllr O’Dea who has the final say.

At the last meeting, the northside councillor made an attempt to raise the matter under Any Other Business, but he was declared out of order, and a number of other members spoke up in defence of the mayor.

Cllr O’Dea then made a hasty exit from the meeting with his Fianna Fail colleagues.

Cllr Prendiville said: “Fine Gael, Fianna Fail and other parties seem to be circling the wagons in defence of the mayor. This controversy could be resolved immediately if he could make a public statement refuting the newspaper allegations which are hanging over him, and this would all be cleared up”.

When he did try to raise the matter at the meeting, Cllr Prendiville was shut down, with Cllr Frankie Daly describing him as a “protestor and philosopher”, and Cllr John Gilligan saying: “Who are we to be judge and jury?”

Cllr Prendiville says the two-member AAA bloc on council are “whistleblowers” and as a result are shunned.

“The parties are closing ranks and looking after their friends. It is disgusting. To silence our line of questions, they are hoping to circle the wagons and get everybody to shun us.”