Limerick GAA chairman lashes out at Leader columnist Kiely

Limerick GAA Chairman Oliver Mann
Limerick GAA chairman Oliver Mann launched a scathing attack on the Limerick Leader’s GAA columnist Martin Kiely at Sunday’s convention in Ballylanders, labelling his weekly column as ‘tripe’.

Limerick GAA chairman Oliver Mann launched a scathing attack on the Limerick Leader’s GAA columnist Martin Kiely at Sunday’s convention in Ballylanders, labelling his weekly column as ‘tripe’.

Mann said that the board are being ‘vilified’ in the column and asked Kiely to remember that “each and every one of us in this board is part of a family”.

Kiely wasn’t at the convention in Ballylanders as he was out of the country.

“The board were vilified, no later than last weekend in the paper,” said Mann, “when the man who has set himself up as an authority of what is right and wrong - sorry of what is wrong because as far as he is concerned there is nothing right in Limerick GAA.

“He had a cut at the three of us (secretary Mike O’Riordan and treasurer Donal Morrissey) a couple of days before convention. Was he trying to swing you, the clubs? If he was, he failed.

“I would respectively suggest to that gentleman - like everybody else - that he sees the positives and to remember that each and everyone of us in this board is part of a family.

“Our families - as I eluded to in my speech - are discommoded because of our involvement with Limerick GAA and are prepared to accept that and there is no issue. But I don’t think it is good enough when they pick up the local paper to see a member of their household - who may not have been in that household any night of the previous seven because he or she was out doing work for Limerick GAA - being vilified. That kind of conduct is not acceptable.

“I think it is high time that that gentleman realised that each and every one of us has a family and, while it may not affect us personally, the tripe that he is writing has a knockout on effect on our families.”

Mann went on to tell the delegates: “you are sitting down there and thinking ‘Oliver you are setting yourself up - he is going to lacerate you for the next 52 weeks’.

“If he is so be it. That’s what I am prepared to do because he is for ever talking about leadership. To me that’s leadership in standing up to the tripe that he is writing in the back page, vilifying everyone of us that is giving our time to Limerick GAA.

“He is vilifying you the clubs as well, you might not think so, but he is.

“I said in my speech that the media as a whole have been positive, but there is one serious exception.”

“Power can be consuming in the hands of those who lack grace and humility. Last Sunday Mann appeared to show neither.”

- Read Martin Kiely’s response on Page 32 of this weekend’s print edition of the Limerick Leader