Thursday, 19 November 2020
Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí - Leaders' Questions
Leo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
-----and I will read into the record of the Dáil exactly what she said because it is exactly correct:
The Chief Justice earlier this year identified that there was a vacancy within the Supreme Court. He asked the then Minister for Justice, Deputy Charlie Flanagan, to fill that vacancy. The process then ensued. The JAAB, which is an independent body chaired by the Chief Justice and on which the Presidents of the courts sit on it along with others, made a recommendation. Given that there was a new Government, that there had been an election and that there was an interim Government and Covid, that appointment was not made. Having been appointed [this is the Minister, Deputy McEntee] at the end of June, after a number of weeks, I looked at the recommendation that had been made and other expressions of interest that often come for any of these positions. Following that I spoke with the Taoiseach, the Tánaiste [that is me], the Minister, Deputy Ryan, and the Attorney General, and on foot of that, a recommendation was made and a name was given to Cabinet. There is only one name ever given to Cabinet. There was a clear process. As Minister for Justice I adhered to that process. The person who was appointed came through an official process.
That was the answer given by the Minister.