Personal Explanation by Senator.

Wednesday, 10 February 1960

Seanad Eireann Debate
Vol. 52 No. 5

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Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  On looking at the Seanad debates of February 4th last, volume 52, column 442, I noticed a reference by me, in the third paragraph, to the news editor of Radio [452] Éireann. I want to make it clear that I did not intend to refer to an individual and therefore I am taking the first opportunity available to me of stating that in this connection I had no intention of casting a reflection on a particular individual.

Minister for Posts and Telegraphs (Mr. Hilliard): Information on Michael Hilliard  Zoom on Michael Hilliard  Could the Senator add to that? Would the Senator go further and say that the Director General is in fact an Irish national? Apparently the Senator said that the Director of Radio Éireann was not an Irish national.

Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  That is not quite correct. What I said was that the Director not being an Irishman——

Mr. Hilliard: Information on Michael Hilliard  Zoom on Michael Hilliard  An Irish national.

Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  That is the second paragraph of my statement, Sir: “I understand the Director of Broadcasting was consulted about it. Being a non-national, it is possible he did not understand the seriousness of the matter...” I think that should stand.

Mr. Hilliard: Information on Michael Hilliard  Zoom on Michael Hilliard  He is a national.

Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  He was not born in this country.

Mr. Hilliard: Information on Michael Hilliard  Zoom on Michael Hilliard  He is an Irish national and I intended to make a statement on the matter.

Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  If he is an Irish national, certainly he spent the bulk of his life outside the country.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Liam O Buachalla  Zoom on Liam O Buachalla  We cannot debate the matter. If the Minister says the person concerned is an Irish national, that should be accepted.

Dr. O'Donovan: Information on John O'Donovan  Zoom on John O'Donovan  If the Minister tells me he is an Irish national, of course I accept it. I was really exculpating the Director of Broadcasting by reason of the fact that he might not understand the matter. I think the inference in the third paragraph, in the way it is reported, is a more serious one, as it pointed to a particular individual, which I did not intend.


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