Limerick’s Willie O’Dea rejects “money grabber” slurs

Eugene Phelan

Reporter:

Eugene Phelan

FORMER Defence Minister Willie O’Dea has strongly hit out at those who called him a “money grabber” and said that if he had not been re-elected to the Dail he would be financially better off and earning up to €25,000 a year more from his two pensions.

FORMER Defence Minister Willie O’Dea has strongly hit out at those who called him a “money grabber” and said that if he had not been re-elected to the Dail he would be financially better off and earning up to €25,000 a year more from his two pensions.

The Limerick politician said that he got some very “hurtful emails” since he got his €54,000 severance package (half which he received after tax) when he ceased being a minister.

“I got some hurtful emails saying I was a money grabber. This was totally unfair and at variance with the facts,” he told the Limerick Leader.

Party leader Micheal Martin recently backed up Deputy O’Dea and said he was entitled to the money he got which also included €8,500 in step down payments this year.

“I would say that I am down about €25,000 a year by being re-elected because I am now on a TD’s salary. I am now on about €25,000 less then the two pensions I would have been entitled to had I not got re-elected,” he explained.

“I would have been entitled to a ministerial pension at the salary when I ceased to being a minister and I would have been entitled to a full TD’s pension at the salary before it was reduced. So If I was not re-elected I would be on over €20,000 year more,” he explained. “I was making up the figures lately and that is the situation.”