Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Public Expenditure Seán Fleming TD has said the Government must explain why it has recently approved the appointment of new Secretaries-General on terms Ministers have criticised as being unacceptable.

Deputy Fleming made the comments following confirmation from the Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin that the Government has appointed four new Secretaries-General since they came into office on March 9th.  Each of these new Secretaries-General are entitled to the “special severance gratuity”, something which has been highly criticised by all parties in the Dáil.”

“This is clearly a case of the Government saying one thing and doing another.  The Government has not even given a time frame for ending this practice for new appointees.”

Deputy Fleming said: “Members of the Government have repeatedly said that these special severance gratuity arrangements for Secretaries-General are not appropriate but they continue to appoint new Department heads with these extravagant conditions.”

“It is not good enough for the Government to blur this issue by referring to a new public service pension scheme for new entrants which will only come into effect in more than forty years,” concluded Deputy Fleming.