Fianna Fáil Justice Spokesperson Niall Collins TD has responded to the latest revelations in the unfolding crisis surrounding the behaviour of Minister Shatter and the departure of Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan.

Media reports have revealed that Commissioner Callinan had wanted to withdraw the ‘disgusting’ comments at the centre of the recent controversy, but had been asked by Minister Shatter’s officials not to. It was his perceived refusal to withdraw these comments which led to the recent build-up of pressure on the Commissioner.

Deputy Collins commented, “It has been an extraordinary week, with one crisis quickly building on or replacing the last. But even in the context of this week, these latest revelations are genuinely shocking.

“The idea that the most senior Garda in the country would be effectively blocked from doing the right thing and gagged from withdrawing comments he knew to be inappropriate by the Minister’s officials, is outrageous.

“By remaining silent and thus protecting the Minister, the Commissioner steadily build further and further pressure on his own situation which culminated in the events of this week.

“This new information further proves the point that there are no lengths this Government will not go to and no price they will not pay in order to protect Minister Shatter.

“As we consider this latest development, one question presents itself clearly: what has to happen and who has to suffer before Government ministers, and Labour Party ministers in particular realise that the price they are paying to keep Minister Shatter in position is simply too high?”