Fianna Fáil Seanad Leader and Finance Spokesperson Darragh O’Brien has responded to the news today that the Labour Leader Eamon Gilmore has taken on a fourth Special Adviser, bringing the cost of advice provided just for him to over €500,000.

Senator O’Brien commented: “The revelation that Eamon Gilmore is to take on a fourth special adviser on a salary of €80k plus, just weeks before another savage budget is genuinely unbelievable. As the Cabinet sits down to debate how many elderly people should lose home help hours, and how many hospital beds they are going to close, the Labour Party Leader thinks that yet another highly paid special adviser for his personal use is a spending priority?

“This is a scandal. It shows how out of touch the Labour Party has become in a very short period of time and it raises very serious question marks over the judgement and leadership of Eamon Gilmore. His representatives in Dublin and around the country will also face serious questions in the communities that elected them. Are they comfortable that the Tánaiste’s personal team of advisers now costs the taxpayer an extraordinary €500,000 per year? This additional €80k spend would pay for 7 to 8,000 home help hours. This is yet another nail in the coffin of the Labour Party’s credibility.”