The Kilkenny Journal

Monday, 25th September 2017
Latest Edition

McGuinness for Jobs and Enterprise ministry ? 

Talking just now to a top McGuinness insider in Kilkenny Fianna Fail the Kilkenny Journal learned that John McGuinness TD is in favour of going into a full partnership government with Fine Gael in which Enda Kenny would go as taoiseach for the first two years and the Fianna Fail nominee rotate as Taoiseach after that for the following two years. All minister and junior minister posts would be equally shared, according to the McGuinness proposals, all committees shared as well. Deputy McGuinness hinmself looks forward to a ministry preferably in the business sector so would look forward to taking over from the present minister Richard  Bruton in Jobs and Enterprise.  Thus John withdrew his name from the FF Ceann Comhairle list today as he has decided that he wants to take a leading part in securing a full term Fianna Fail-Fine Gael working government for Ireland. 

The McGuinness confidante told the Kilkenny Journal that John expects to be on the Fianna Fail negotiating team for government with Fine Gael,  that this is another reason that he has dropped out of the Ceann Comhairle race, that such a government would last for four years and would have to immediately tackle homelessness and housing and also health. Regarding the water charges they could meet halfway with Fine Gael, keeping in mind that the Kilkenny city water supply is in need of immediate rehabilitation and that John wants this to be done now before anything else.  

Bobby Aylward too would be perfectly happy serving alongside his friend John Paul Phelan of Fine Gael in government and ideally both local TDs would deserve junior ministries - Kilkenny would do well out of this, the McGuinness insider informed us just now. 

The Fianna Fail Comhairle Dail Cheanntair would have no problem with the prospect of joining in with Fine Gael for a joint government to get the country going again and for the sake of the Irish people, the McGuinness confidante assured us , pointing to how well both parties are co-operating together already in running Kilkenny County Council.  Nor do they see much prospect of a strong opposition emerging amongst the "whingers" that would be left on the opposition benches - " we have to save the country from the likes of poor TDs such as Gino Kenny, Brid Smith  and the local Shinner that this election unfortunately threw up", the Fianna Fail insider assured us.  

Published in Front


Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny had a lengthy talk with Kilkenny deputy John McGuinness about the formation of the next government. 
The conversation is understooid to be the first time  caretaker Taoiseach Kenny has spoken in some detail about the formation of the next government with a member of the Fianna Fail parliamentary party. 
The Kilkenny Journal had reported exclusively that Mr. McGuinness favours a full partnership government between Fianna Fail and Fine Gael in which he would figure as a senior cabinet minister, preferably in Jobs and Enterprise , and this meeting confirmed our special report. 

The meeting , which the Sunday Independent reports today, happened on the street outside Leinster House on Wednesday night last. Both men are friends over the years so John McGuinness makes a good contact man. for those FF forces favouring coalition, though the meeting was neither pre-arranged or sanctioned by either party. 
However onlookers and eye witnesses said that the two spoke at length about the possibility of forming a grand coalition between their respective parties. 
Mr. McGuinness encountered Mr. Kenny and former FG TD Tom Barry of Cork near Merrion Square in Dublin city centre. About ten minutes after McGuinness arrived Barry went off to leave the two politicians speak for a significant length of time. 
"Clearly they were discussing the future of Irish politics as a result of the general election" , an onlooker told the Sunday Independent. Mr. McGuinness is a very pragmatic member of the Fianna Fail party who sees the election result as an opportunity.  However his pragmatism is not shared by the majority of his party who are wary of Sinn Fein opportunism.

Fianna Fail leader Micheal martin is more concerned with the future of the party down the road, as is his duty, rather than seizing the trappings of office just now as McGuinness is.  McGuinness argues that politics is about power and opportunity while others more purist  such as Eamon Ui Cuiv  warn of the dangers of surrendering the party to greed and mammon. In Kilkenny the old saying goes that, "there is the Fianna fail party and the McGuinness party". 

Asked about his meeting with McGuinness a spokesperson for Enda Kenny said that , "Fine Gael talks to everybody. "  We believe that those TDs  in Fianna fail who favour a full coalition government will now start to move over to McGuinness while the purists like Willie O'Dea and Eamon Ui Cuiv will back leader Micheal Martin to the hilt.  


Published in Front
Wednesday, 12 October 2016 14:04



There is an attitude in Fianna Fail that John is to be avoided, not to seen with, even to be ignored. This is particularly so since his revolt against leader Micheal Martin in the last few years while party members see it - even here in Kilkenny - that Micheal Martin saved and recovered Fianna Fail.

John now has nil influence on the party no matter what he says or proposes. And if it came to it most Fianna Failers would glad to be rid of him from the party - even here in Kilkenny!

John's problem is that like Hillary Clinton he can't be trusted. We hasten to add that in personal dealings he is scrupulously honest, but he can't be depended upon in the party political sense.

John is a politician who needs his own party. He is the greatest Independent in Dail Eireann and has been for years. He has nowhere to go in Fianna Fail , neither has Bobby Aylward for other reasons.

Kilkenny won't have a minister from Fianna Fail any time in the future In fact Senator Jennifer Murnane O'Connor is being pushed by Micheal Martin and the party to eventually replace John McGuinness! It is felt that she would have a better chance of being elected to the Dail than John's Son Cllr Andrew McGuinness who is not rated to succeed in national politics, and in any case Micheal Martin doesn't want another McGuinness.

Historically the McGuinnesses were not founders of Fianna Fail or anything like that. The legendary Mayor John McGuinness, John's great uncle, was a Parnellite, Irish parliamentary party and an Independent after that. It was John's dad Mick who first joined Fianna Fail back in the Fifties when he first sought election. The Aylwards are looked upon much better party men, carefully toeing the party line in Fianna Fail.

We feel therefore that John has given enough time to a party that plainly does not want him anymore and he should consider his options for his own sake but more importantly for his succession.

Though John makes some good points they're wasted on thin air. That's because Micheal Martin and the hierarchy of the Fianna Fail don't want him anymore. TDs say that they wouldn't sleep at night if he had any say in their futures. They don't trust him. Bobby and Liam Aylward never have. Now Senator Jennifer O'Connor is going her own way too in seeking election to the Dail, she's going to depend on herself and nobody else and the lady is right. Jennifer told us yesterday that she values all the support she can garner from Kilkenny and will look after us too as a TD.

It's telling that around the country that John got no support when he launched that leadership bid last year. In fact TDs, senators and party members turned their backs on him and virtually shunned him. Nobody in the party wants to be seen talking with him or to be friendly with him. He's all alone in the Fianna Fail party, in fact he's washed up and has no future with that party as long as Michael Martin rules and he can lead as long as he likes.

It's particularly sad as John McGuinness is so capable a politician and that the country could well do with his services in important business ministry. Thousands would follow John in a new political party as he is highly thought off right across the country across all political divides. John must baulk at the money it would cost but he could pull it off now that people are so disenchanted with the political stasis in the Dail. There needs to be a strong man like John to help rescue the political system back to safety , but as long as he remains in Fianna Fail he is wasted and his talents are gone for nought.

Published in Front

It's easy knowing that John McGuinness is back on the ballot papers after his by-election  absence, with his vote soaring right through the roof in Kilkenny city. Kathleen Funchion of Sinn Fein is doing great as well with votes transferring between her and the city Independent Noel Walsh who is doing nicely  and should save his deposit this time round.  

The votes for McGuinness are flying in  the CBS - just across the road from the Kickham Street  gable end house with the legend proclaiming " officially opened by John Magennis PLG, Mayor 1914-1918" - a hundred years and still raking in the votes!  Yes you'd know he's back. 

All the old hands are back with John Paul Phelan doing the business too  as we mingled around the city polling booths. It's very apparent too that there is a big Labour turn-out in a desperate bid to save Ann Phelan who is still in there fighting well. It was like the Alamo for the Labour junior minjister this past couple of weeks but signs seem better for her today on the most important day of all where it counts at the polls. But it still resembles the battle of Mount Street Bridge with Labour taking on the casualties of the Sherwood Foresters. l. 

David Fitzgerald and Paddy McKee are keeping the Kilkenny city  vote high,. in fact we are amongst the highest voters in the country all day today. In there too you have Malcolm Noonan and Paddy Manning battling it out between the Left and Right with Manning making an almighty stand against abortion - he'll be in there in the shakeup tomorrow morning in Cillin Hill. 

The high votes coming out of the CBS in Stephen Street are extraordinary as the McGuinness votes pump out from there across the city to  to Michael Street.  An hour ago we saw the Mayor G.I. Jope Malone still looking after the McGuinness votes at the CBS. We met several voters who are transferring between McGuinness, Funchion and Noel Walsh - that seems to be a common vote as we asked people exiting the CBS what they had done. "I've done enough damage for the day ", Eugene McGrath of Kennyswell declared as he disclosed that he had voted "for Sinn Fein and Noel Walsh, John as usual" , but no way Fine Gael!"

There'll be a sleepless night for candidates tonight - but John McG can sleep well in his bed, in fact he can afford to snore the night away and dream more happy dreams , it looks like  Kathleen Funchion  can snooze as well.  

 Nobody else can:-)

Published in Front


Deputy John McGuinness did more to expose the Grace case than any other politician in the country. He has a great record of going after the HSE in the defence of the vulnerable people that they are responsible and answerable for. He has, for instance, put a stop to the HSE purloining patients' allowances to pay for furniture in their hospital rooms that they neither want nor need. He has discovered thousands of patient's medical files thrown into a damp infested unlocked shed in Wolfe Tone Street. He is the nemesis of the HSE and rightly so. And now he has them up against the wall again with the Taoiseach driven to apologise abjectly for them in the Dail.

Meanwhile his successor as Chair the Public Accounts Committee, who replaced McGuinness at the decision of Micheal Martin because John was getting too popular there for Micheal's liking, hasn't achieved anything comparable though a year has passed. This is what we find wrong with Irish politics, that the best man can be replaced for purely personal political reasons, and the whole country knows that John McGuinness was the best Chairman of the PAC in its history. But, as we say, Micheal Martin could not afford to leave John get on with the good work there because he was getting too popular in the country for Micheal's liking.

It is indeed a shame that a deputy of McGuinness's calibre does not even have a shadow portfolio today. Micheal Martin is a fanatic at looking after his own position. No wonder he is known across Cork City as such a great Me Feiner! But neither Martin nor anybody else uncovered the Grace case though they attack the government over it today - it was John McGuinness who did that and fair play to the Kilkenny deputy. In all fairness and justice Micheal Martin and the party must do something to recognise McGuinness's unique contribution in exposing the HSE for all their sins. His appointment to the shadow cabinet would bring Fianna Fail up a lot in the eyes of the voting public and Mr. Martin should realise that if he wants to achieve power any time soon.

Two reports highlighting 'significant failures' in the foster care system in the south-east were published at HSE offices at Lacken in Kilkenny yesterday. The HSE issued an 'unreserved and heartfelt apology' to those affected by the failures of the f...


Published in Front

Housing Minister Simon Coveney is a landlord


Minister for Housing Simon Coveney – who now presides over Ireland’s housing crisis – is a landlord – one of at least 30 politicians who must declare they earn more than €2,600 a month in rent.

Mc Guinness rents out three properties in Dublin, three in Kilkenny, a property in Limerick, a property in Tipperary, and an interest in a nursing home.

Minister Coveney is tasked with controlling the housing market in Ireland which has seen rents spiral to record levels in Dublin.  While thousands of Irish families are homeless.

He has had to declare  he owns a rental property in Harty’s Quay, Rochestown, Cork city.

The revelation has emerged at the same time that one of the biggest landords in the country has admitted the rental market in this country is reaching its “limit.”

1 – Kerry Deputy Michael Healy RaeAt least 8 properties:   2 farmhouses, a property in Kilgarvan, Co Kerry,  a rental apartment in Killarney, Kerry, houses in Kenmare, Castleisland and Killarney, and student accommodation in Limerick.

2 – Fianna Fáil’s John Mc Guinness:  At least 8 properties and an interest in a nursing home:  3 rental properties in Dublin, 3 in Kilkenny, a property in Limerick, a property in Tipperary, and an interest in a nursing home.

3 – Social Democrat, Stephen Donnelly:   2 properties:  Rental property in Beacon South Quarter in Dublin and in Clara, Co Offaly.

4 – Former ceann comhairle and Fine Gael TD, Sean Barrett:   Shareholder in 1 property:  Barrett states he is a shareholder in a company that owns an office block and which is leased to a tenant.

5 – Minister for Housing Simon Coveney:  1 property:   Harty’s Quay, Rochestown, in Cork.

6 – Agriculture Minister Michael Creed:  Interests in 3 properties:  Money invested in three addresses in Macroom, Co Cork.

7 – Fianna Fáil’s Dara Calleary:  2 month’s rental income from a property that he once lived in on Distillery Road in Dublin but sold it in July 2015.

8 – Fine Gael Galway East TD, Ciarán Cannon:   An executive director in a property company.

9 – Fine Gael’s Marcella Corcoran Kennedy:   27 acres at Ferbane, Co Offaly that has been rented out.

10:  Waterford TD, John Deasy:   1 rental apartment in Citywest in Dublin.

11:  Pat Deering:  1 rental property in Rathvilly, Co Carlow.

12:  Chief whip Regina Doherty:  2 properties:  One in Ashbourne Business Park and City Campus in Limerick.

13:  Fianna Fáil’s Timmy Dooley:  2 properties:   One in Charlotte Quay, Dublin and one in Rathfarnham, Dublin.

14:  Charlie Flanagan:   1 property:  He lets a holiday house in Co Sligo part of the year.

15:  Sean Fleming: Rented a former post office in County Laois for part of last year.

16:  Independent Noel Grealish:  2 properties and land:  He let out a house in Galway and a apartment in Dublin.  He also owns a 8,800 sq ft commercial unit in Briarhill, Galway.

17:  Martin Heydon:  1 rental property in Co Limerick.

18:  Paul Kehoe:   2 properties:  Renting a property in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, and an apartment on Haddington Road, Dublin 4.

19:  Fianna Fail Cork TD, Billy Kelleher:  Rents out an apartment in Glanmire, Co Cork.

20: Fianna Fáil’s Brendan Smith:  1 rental apartment in Dublin.

21:  Robert Troy:  2 properties:  1 in Mullingar and 1 inDublin.

22:  Wexford’s Mick Wallace:  2 properties:  Both are rented out in Wicklow.

Published in Front

Kerins says Dail is 'lawless place' after court ruling

Former Rehab boss wants case overturned by Supreme Court

Ms Kerins last week lodged appeal papers with the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court seeking to overturn a decision by a specially convened three-judge Divisional Court.

The Division Court found the former charity boss had her reputation personally damaged by comments made at a PAC hearing, but said it could not find against the committee as it was covered by privilege under the Constitution. Ms Kerins has argued she is entitled to protect her good name under the Constitution and the courts have an obligation to provide a legal avenue for her to do so if her reputation has been damaged by an Oireachtas Committee.

The High Court heard she tried to take her own life after a PAC hearing where she was questioned on her salary and pension entitlements during a seven-hour committee meeting.

In her application for leave of appeal, which was lodged with the Court Services last Thursday, Ms Kerins's legal team argued that the Divisional Court made a number of errors in its judgment last January. In the application, which has been seen by the Sunday Independent, it is argued the court "erred in law" by finding that privileges and immunities afforded to the Dail and Seanad also applied to Oireachtas committees.

The document states that this is the first case in which Article 15.13 of the Constitution was applied to "render immune from scrutiny utterances" in a committee hearing.

Lawyers for Ms Kerins argue the Divisional Court's findings are contrary to precedents set by the so-called Abbeylara Supreme Court judgment which prohibits Oireachtas Committees from making findings of fact or expressions of opinion adverse to the good name or reputation of citizens.

The Supreme Court found an Oireachtas committee was acting outside its remit by investigating the shooting dead of John Carthy in Abbeylara in 2000. It is also claimed a precedent established in a landmark case taken against the PAC by Charles Haughey's brother Paraic 'Jock' Haughey, has been overturned by the Divisional Court's ruling against Ms Kerins. The application says the court "failed to reflect the necessary balance between the individual's rights and the powers of the institution of State".

The application added: "The Divisional Court erred in failing to recognise that when considering the exercise of a power within the sphere of competence of the House of the Oireachtas (which did not occur in this instance), the separation of powers doctrine under the Constitution does not recognise the existence of a lawless place in which people are empowered to do wrong without restraint."

The application also argued Ms Kerins would be provided more legal protection if she had been compelled before the committee rather than attend, as she had, voluntarily. Her lawyers have asked that the case bypass the Court of Appeal and be heard in the Supreme Court as it is a constitutional matter of public importance.

Health Minister Simon Harris and Transport Minister Shane Ross, along with Sinn Fein Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald have been named as respondents in the case, as have all the other former members of the PAC who were involved in Ms Kerins's committee appearance.

Sunday Independent

Published in Front

Advertise With Us

Advertise Here
Kilkenny's veteran professional photographer
Click here for more information

Get our Newsletter

Just enter your email address to keep up to date with the Kilkenny Journal News.

Filter News by Date

« September 2017 »
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30  


Joomla! Debug Console


Profile Information

Memory Usage

Database Queries