Seanad debates

Tuesday, 9 July 2024

An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business


1:00 pm

Photo of Victor BoyhanVictor Boyhan (Independent)

I would like to join with others in sending my condolences to Gerardine, John's wife, who I met. I knew John well and I was thinking about John yesterday or the day before when the news broke. I travelled with him on the Organisation for Security and Co-Operation in Europe, OSCE, trip and like so many journeys that many of us do through the course of work, you become quite close to people to whom you would not necessarily gravitate. We sat beside each other on the plane both ways, and indeed some here may very well have been on that visit. He was a man of few words but very strong beliefs and very definite ways of going on. The one thing I learned about him and the GAA is that the GAA family is another big political family. It is very like politics and John led from the front and on the ground. As someone said earlier, he did not shout from the ditch. He got involved. He was proud, focused and strategic by his very nature and he brought that to politics.We will miss him. While he had left the Seanad, people kept in touch with him. We remember his family in our thoughts and prayers.

I will not go into the matter Senator Dooley raised but it is not appropriate in this House to discuss the internal workings of members of staff. People may have concerns but we have a commission, and I want to make that clear. There is no point in people grandstanding here. There is a commission that governs and rules this House and its procedures. Political representatives and parties can bring issues to its attention. It needs to be said that it is wholly inappropriate and unfair to single out a person who is still an employee of this organisation on the floor of Seanad Éireann.


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