Fianna Fáil Justice Spokesperson Dara Calleary has called for urgent action from the Justice Minister Alan Shatter to fill the senior garda posts that have been left vacant by retirements over the past six months. Deputy Calleary has said he is deeply concerned by the Minister’s failure to take any action to fill the posts of the most two senior gardaí in the Anglo investigation, who retired before Christmas.
Deputy Calleary said: “This is happening on Minister Shatter’s watch, but despite repeated warnings from me and others over the past number of months he has failed to act. Instead, the Minister has allowed gaping holes to appear at the most senior and specialised level in An Garda Síochána since he has taken up office.
“The number of officers involved in the Anglo Investigation alone have more than halved in a year. Only 11 gardaí and 8 members of the Office of Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) are now involved in the Anglo investigation, compared to 27 gardaí and 16 ODCE officers in 2010. The Minister knew months ago that the two most senior gardaí in the Anglo investigation were retiring before Christmas. In December, I appealed to him to fill these empty positions but I understand that he has still not sought Cabinet approval to do so. This is simply not good enough.
“We cannot have a situation where more than half of the Assistant Commissioner posts are now left vacant. We are losing some of the most experienced and high-ranking members of the force and allowing large gaps emerge in specialised units. In the public interest, I am calling for an urgent statement from the Justice Minister about how and when these posts will be filled.”