Home Cheap jerseys Strange case of the mayor and the maternity ward

Strange case of the mayor and the maternity ward


Besides being former Mayors of Dublin, what are former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, former Green Party leader John Gormley, Seán D Dublin Bay Rockall Loftus, Vincent Ballyfermot Jackson, Carmencita Hederman, Emer Costello, Seán Haughey, Hazel Chu and dozens of others have in common?

It was another former Lord Mayor of Dublin, Paul McAuliffe of Fianna Fáil, who provided the answer on Thursday night as a Dáil debate over plans for a new National Maternity Hospital (NMH) drew to a close.

The answer is that all of the above have been Governors of Holles Street Hospital. And Alison Gilliland, the current Lord Mayor, is now a member of the board.

McAuliffe dropped this mini-bombshell while addressing public concerns about the government leasing the land on which the new hospital is to be built rather than owning it entirely. After reading all the documents, he said, as a layman, he could not find any mechanism allowing the owner or the management of the St Vincent Hospital Group (SVHG) to interfere in the functioning of the maternity ward. clinically independent.

“Before, it was an honorary thing, but today company law is, rightly, very strict”

And then, as he was talking about ownership and governance, he decided to come clean with Health Minister Stephen Donnelly.

“Now Minister, of all the times I’ve spoken to you about this, I’ve never mentioned it, but you might be surprised to learn that I’m a former governor of the National Maternity Hospital.”

What? Who knew?

“When I was elected Lord Mayor, I was made Governor,” Paul revealed, adding that it certainly surprised him at the time. Not only that, but when the President of Holles Street, aka the Archbishop of Dublin, was unable to attend, “I had the responsibility of chairing the meetings”.

Although there is much talk that the current hospital building is outdated, McAuliffe used his own experience to point out that the governance model is also completely outdated, but that hasn’t stopped all the legally permitted services to be performed in the NMH.

The Archbishop of Dublin has never attended board meetings and when the first notice and ‘meeting file’ arrived at the Mansion House for new incumbent Paul McAuliffe he promptly responded and said that he wouldn’t attend any of them.

“When I was appointed Lord Mayor I think I was chairman of about 20 different companies and I wrote to them all and said, ‘Listen, I think this is very bad governance by nowadays that someone is appointed to your board of directors that you did not choose and then they are replaced every 12 months. McAuliffe believes the Holles Street appointment dates back to the National Maternity Hospital Act in the 1930s, when Alfie Byrne was Lord Mayor for all but one year of that decade and was appointed to all sorts of councils.

“My view was that corporate governance is totally different than it was years ago and I was not comfortable being legally responsible for a company that I didn’t really know nothing. It used to be an honorary thing, but nowadays company law is rightly very strict, so now you have to register for the board and report to Sipo and everything else.

A hen for the absent owner

William Herbert’s ears must have burned this week as everyone was talking about him after Stephen Donnelly casually dropped his name on Wednesday morning in the middle of the health committee meeting on the NMH.

“Land ownership is not linked to the appointment of administrators,” explained the Minister of Health to the members, giving the example of the current system. “The owner of the land under Holles Street is the Earl of Pembroke, whoever he is, and he has no influence.”

That would be William Alexander Sidney Herbert, the wealthy 18th Earl of Pembroke, who owns a 14,000-acre estate in Wiltshire and a magnificent stately home (used to film interior scenes in Netflix hits Bridgerton and The Crown) as well as full ownership of the National Maternity Hospital and many other properties around the Merrion Square area.

The rents paid by the state to aristocratic British landlords in this ridiculous throwback to our colonial past aren’t exactly onerous. Figures published in 2011 for our ground rent obligations included €257.76 for Iveagh House, €220 for the Four Courts and €7.33 for Dublin Castle.

But still, every little thing counts.

In order to secure their Mansion House, the Corpo also agreed to provide a very expensive loaf of double refined sugar weighing six pounds at Christmas.

The proposed long-term lease contract of €10 per year between the state and St. Vincent’s Hospital looks cheap by comparison. However, the government continues to come under pressure from the opposition to convince St Vincent to give or sell the land to the state instead of the lease option. Sinn Féin is keeping the political drama going by tabling a motion next week to secure full public ownership of the site and building.

Acquiring full ownership of public buildings has always been complicated. Just over 300 years ago, in 1715, property developer Joshua Dawson sold his freehold Dawson Street residence to the Dublin Corporation for £3,500, in addition to an annual rent of 40 shillings.

In order to secure their Mansion House, the Corpo also agreed to provide a very expensive loaf of double refined sugar weighing six pounds at Christmas with “two fat male hens”.

In return, Joshua Dawson agreed to build an additional room that could be used for civic functions, and is still used for that purpose today.

Two large male hens? Perhaps the government could send a pair to the SVHG to seal the deal, if it’s still clinically appropriate.

But who?

Aodhán Ó Ríordáin, Niall Quinn and Gary Cooke on the Football Tour of Dublin

Football-mad TD’s post-Covid tours

The Football Walking Tours of Dublin by Aodhán Ó Ríordáin and comedian Gary Cooke began almost two years ago and have been going quietly through the pandemic. From the start, their unique take on the history of football (not the thing to say football) in the capital garnered great reviews from thoughtful aficionados who signed up for trips.

Labor TD Ó Ríordáin may spend his working week talking at Leinster House and his Saturdays pounding the pavements of the Dublin Bay North constituency, but on Sundays he likes to relax and unwind pounding more streets in Dublin while talking for up to two hours at a time to complete strangers.

Now that all restrictions have been lifted, the football-loving duo are stepping up their tour schedule and increasing the number allowed on each outing (25 max).

Ó Ríordáin and Cooke’s original tour meandered through the north of the city, starting in the shadow of Croke Park in Ballybough, stopping at significant locations in Irish football history and usually ending at Dalymount Park in passing through Tolka Park and Bertie Ahern’s Drumcondra. They talk history and politics along the way – but strictly sporting variety. The wires are great.

There’s a stop outside the Archbishop’s Palace to remember the time John Charles McQuaid tried to have a game against Yugoslavia banned

Cooke, of After Match fame, is renowned for his impersonations of legends such as Johnny Giles and Liam Brady and a boy called Eamon Dunphy, and he peppers his contributions with brilliant flashes from the big men.

They reflect on the game’s troubled history and its perception of ‘Irishness’ in the face of the immaculate GAA. They probe the sometimes difficult relations with official Ireland. There’s a stop outside the Archbishop’s Palace in Drumcondra to remember the time John Charles McQuaid tried to have an international game banned against Yugoslavia.

And they wonder if the reason Ireland played Poland so many times in the 1970s and 1980s was really because some senior FAI officials were romantically involved with Polish women.

Now, out of the shadow of Covid, both tour guides have been signed up internationally. Or at least they were drawn to the dark, desolate, southern side.

“We are leaving next Sunday [May 22nd] from the Little Museum of Dublin on St Stephen’s Green and explore the excellent football connections on the south side of the city. Did you know that 38 senior internationals came from Ringsend? says Aodhán, who is rather nerdy about football and collects the shirts and programs he likes to produce while on tour. “We hope to continue most Sundays for the rest of the summer.”

Booking details are on the Little Museum of Dublin website. Meanwhile, the guys did not completely give up their concert in the north. Potential bettors can email [email protected] for more information.

Harney holds up

Former Tánaiste and leader of the Progressive Democrats Mary Harney made a rare visit to Leinster House on Thursday when she appeared before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) hearing on financial governance issues at the University of Limerick in 2020. She was there as Chancellor and President. of the college governing board.

In response to questions, she said it was an unpaid role and she did not claim any expenses for it.

Sinn Féin’s Matt Carthy asked the ‘esteemed’ witness how many councils and committees she sits on.

Mary, who retired from the Dáil and national politics in 2011, has had a quick turn around. “Well, I sit on the board of four private companies and do other consulting as well.”

The meeting was robust in part, with Harney and Independent TD Verona Murphy getting involved in a short spat over the Chancellor’s role as director of public interest at KPMG.

Harney held on, as she did throughout the session. The politicians were impressed. Labour’s Seán Sherlock, while not sharing her ideology, praised her for always being “honourable, honest and direct”.

The chairman, Brian Stanley of Sinn Féin, noted as he finished that it was the first time Mary Harney had appeared before a committee in her time. Earlier, she told TDs that her last visit was for the bank inquiry in 2015.

“I noticed that as people came in, I would say the majority of them weren’t around when I was an MP and I haven’t been gone that long.”

“I wasn’t one,” Stanley said.

“I’m just talking to you about the retraining of deputies, perhaps to warn you all,” she replied.

His colleague Matt Carthy replied gallantly, or maybe not: “Maybe we’ll all be as successful as you after.”

“I think, Deputy Carthy, you are very successful,” she told him.

“You went through all the battles of the 90s and 2000s,” Stanley cooed.

“It is sure”, smiles the witness. “I thought I had learned to watch my back, but it’s a constant. . . I describe myself, Mr. Chairman, as a recovering politician.

“We’re going to settle for that,” Brian said.

Afterwards, some longtime Oireachtas officials discussed Mary Harney’s performance. “Usually a figurehead like a Chancellor just reads the opening statement and lets the permanent staff answer questions. But she was in control. It was a masterclass in how to run a committee meeting. I forgot how good she was,” one said.