November 16, 2020
Dáil time must be set aside to question Minister for Justice on judicial appointment – Martin Kenny TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice Martin Kenny TD has said that Dáil time must be set aside this week to question the Minister for Justice on the appointment of Mr. Justice Séamus Woulfe to the Supreme Court.

Teachta Kenny said;

“There are serious questions surrounding the appointment process of Mr. Justice Séamus Woulfe to the Supreme Court and the opposition have made a reasonable request to put questions to the Minister for Justice this week surrounding the appointment process.

“Given the length of time the vacancy in the Supreme Court existed, it is logical that there would be numerous expressions of interest from existing members of the judiciary; presumably from experienced and well qualified judges.

“The question must be asked why did the Minister for Justice not inform her Cabinet colleagues of other expressions of interest prior to the appointment of the former Attorney General? 

“The Fianna Fáil leader, and now Taoiseach, was particularly critical of the appointment of a previous Attorney General to the Court of Appeal in 2017. It would seem logical that in this case he would have applied due diligence to this appointment and asked numerous questions.

“The system of judicial appointments remains untransparent and murky.

“It is vital that the process is subject to adequate scrutiny. 

“This is a completely separate issue to the current issue surrounding the recent view of the Chief Justice that Mr. Justice Woulfe should resign as a judge.

“It is a matter of government accountability and Dáil time must be set aside this week to put questions to the Minister responsible.”

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