Mahon report finds Reynolds ‘abused political power’

The Mahon report, the findings of the tribunal on corruption in the Irish planning process, is heavily critical of former Fianna Fáil leader and Longford Westmeath TD, Albert Reynolds.

The Mahon report, the findings of the tribunal on corruption in the Irish planning process, is heavily critical of former Fianna Fáil leader and Longford Westmeath TD, Albert Reynolds.

The 3,270 page report, published yesterday 15 years since it began, found the behaviour of Mr Reynolds to be “an abuse of political power and government authority.”

While Taoiseach in 1993, Mr Reynolds had sought a substantial donation for the Fianna Fail party from developer Owen O’Callaghan. Mr O’Callaghan was seeking support to build a stadium in Neilstown in Dublin at the time. An IR£80,000 donation was later paid to Fianna Fáil.

However, the report did not find Mr Reynolds to be corrupt, and found no evidence that the former taoiseach had received personal payments from O’Callaghan.

The Mahon report was also satisfied Albert Reynolds was made aware of a IR£50,000 payment made to FF TD Pádraig Flynn in 1992 by developer Tom Gilmartin. This money was for the Fianna Fáil party but the Mayo TD used the “money for his personal benefit.” Mr Reynolds did not bring up the matter with Mr Flynn, and subsequently appointed him as a minister in his cabinet.

In summation, the Mahon Report found corruption affected “every level of Irish political life and was allowed to continue unabated”

In light of the report, leader of Fianna Fáil, Micheal Martin will seek a motion to expel former taoiseach Bertie Ahern, Pádraig Flynn and three councillors from the party.

For local reaction to this news see next week’s Leader.