Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 13 July 2023

Public Accounts Committee

Appropriation and Expenditure of Public Moneys by RTÉ (Resumed): RTÉ

9:30 am

Photo of Cormac DevlinCormac Devlin (Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
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Mr. Bakhurst's colleagues are very welcome back. I welcome Mr. Bakhurst here for the first time. Everyone is very excited to come before the Committee of Public Accounts. The witnesses will know that when they come back to us in a couple of months' time.

I will stick with the tripartite agreement because the information Mr. Lynch has provided is new. Certainly from my perspective, the last engagement we had in this very room was to the effect that the only person who seemed to know about this agreement was Dee Forbes. I am not finished. Then we engaged with Mr. Tubridy and Mr. Kelly. I do not mind whom the suggestion around this agreement came from. The fact is that there are emails between Ms Forbes, Ms O'Keeffe, Mr. Jennings and possibly others. When I asked Mr. Kelly on Tuesday who was on that call on 7 May, I believe - and Ms Mullooly may confirm this - he said there were two members from the RTÉ solicitor's office. What I am wondering is how the witnesses left this committee room a week ago giving the impression, certainly to me and possibly to others, that only one person knew about this. That is why the illusion around a secret payment and a secret deal came about. It was almost like a rogue director general, DG, went and negotiated a deal and told people, "Here is an invoice - pay it." Can Mr. Lynch clarify how that impression has now been created?