Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Wednesday, 5 June 2019
Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment
National Broadband Plan: Discussion
I welcome the following officials from the Commission for Communications Regulation, ComReg, to discuss the national broadband plan: Mr. Garrett Blaney, chairperson and commissioner; Mr. Robert Mourik, commissioner; Mr. Jeremy Godfrey, commissioner; and Mr. Donal Leavy, director of the wholesale division.
I draw the attention of witnesses to the fact that by virtue of section 17(2)(l) of the Defamation Act 2009, they are protected by absolute privilege in respect of their evidence to the committee. However, if they are directed by the Chairman to cease giving evidence on a particular matter and they continue to do so, they are entitled thereafter only to a qualified privilege in respect of their evidence. They are directed that only evidence connected with the subject matter of these proceedings is to be given and they are asked to respect the parliamentary practice to the effect that, where possible, they should not criticise or make charges against any person or entity by name or in such a way as to make him, her or it identifiable.
I advise the witnesses that any submissions or opening statements they have made to the committee will be published on the committee website following the meeting.
Members are reminded of the long-standing practice to the effect that they should not comment on, criticise or make charges against a person outside the Houses or an official either by name or in such a way as to make him or her identifiable.
I remind members and witnesses to turn off their mobile phones or to switch them onto flight mode.
I call Mr. Blaney to make his opening statement.