Coalition Leaders Unhappy with Hogan
The leaders of Ireland's coalition government have welcomed Commissioner Hogan's apology following the fallout from the Oireachtas Golf Society Dinner, however the three leaders continue to have concerns about the Commissioners movements around Ireland during the Covid-19 restrictions. They concluded by saying that ultimately the Commissioner is accountable to the EU commission and not the Irish Government or the Oireachtas.
The leaders of the coalition government have issued a joint statement. An Taoiseach, Micheal Martin, An Tanaiste, Leo Varadkar and Eamon Ryan, Minister for Communications, Networks and Transport, have agreed that concerns remain following the Commissioners apology.
It is clear that breaches of public health guidelines were made by Commissioner Phil Hogan since he travelled to Ireland. The government guidelines clearly required him to restrict his movements for 14 days. He should also have limited his movements to and from Kildare for essential travel only, and he should not have attended the Oireachtas Golf Society dinner. People are correctly angered by these actions given the sacrifices so many have made to adhere to public health guidance. In addition, his delayed and hesitant release of information has undermined public confidence. Commissioner Hogan is accountable to the President of the Commission Ms Ursula von der Leyen, under the legal framework outlined in the Treaties. The government now awaits the outcome of the review being undertaken by the President. Ultimately the Commissioner is accountable to the EU Commission, not to the Irish government or to the Oireachtas.