Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Parliament's Public Accounts Committee to examine financial control in the Irish Red Cross Society

The Blog is pleased to report that the malpractice, maladministration and financial irregularities at the Irish Red Cross are to be discussed by the Dail's (Irish Parliament) Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on 13th October 2011. This is further evidence of the low standards applying at the organisation. In particular the PAC appears concerned about the undeclared Tipperary Tsunami bank account and the manner in which the Society did or did not deal with it and those involved.

The Dail's Public Accounts Committee (PAC), made up of cross party politicians, is tasked to ensure all government funding and grants are spent effectively and as intended. The PAC review of the Irish Red Cross follows hot on the heels of the review by the Government's financial watchdog, the Comptroller and Auditor General, whereby a full chapter was given to the Irish Red Cross and its problems.

The disgraced Society continues to refuse to hold those responsible to account and as a result concerns at every level of Irish society, public, media and political, have increased over the last two years. Until those individuals who have brought the Irish Red Cross to this sorry state are held accountable and removed from their posts the damage and loss of reputation will continue unabated.

The Home Page of the Oireachtas (Ireland's Parliament) website announces the PAC's intention to examine financial irregularities at the Irish Red Cross. The link is below as is the full article. In addition to the announcement the PAC has also decided to publish and put into the public domain correspondence it has received from former Irish Red Cross Head of International, Noel Wardick. The link to this correspondence is also below.

Link to PAC announcement to examine Irish Red Cross:

Link to Noel Wardick's letter:

Public Accounts Committee to examine financial control in the Irish Red Cross Society

The Secretary General of the Department of Defence; Orla Barry Murphy, Accounting Officer in the Office of the Commissioners of Charitable Donations and Bequests; and officials from the Department of Justice will appear before the Public Accounts Committee tomorrow, Thursday, 13th October 2011

A key issue which will be examined at the meeting is the financial control in the Irish Red Cross Society.

Chairman of the Committee, John McGuinness, TD said: “Concerns regarding the capacity of the Society to manage its administration and finance were raised in the past, particularly in relation to a sum of €162,960 that was donated to the 2005 Asian Tsunami Appeal which was left in a local bank account in Tipperary from 2005 to 2008. While no evidence of misappropriation of funds was found and the money was eventually transferred to the appeal fund in September 2008, the case highlighted problems with the governance and financial structures of the organisation.

The Committee will want in particular to see what guidelines, structures and procedures have been put in place to prevent such a situation happening again. We will also be interested in seeing what rules on the handling and tracking of donations have been implemented and if staff and members are receiving adequate training.”

The Committee will meet tomorrow, 13th October at 10am in Committee Room 1, Leinster House 2000.


For further information please contact:

Ciaran Brennan,Houses of the Oireachtas,Communications Unit,Leinster House,Dublin 2
P: +3531 618 3903M: 086-0496518F: +3531 618 4551

Committee of Public Accounts Membership comprises the following TDs (MPs):

John McGuinness (FF, Chairman), Kieran O’Donnell (FG, Chairman), Paul J Connaughton FG, John Deasy FG, Paschal Donohoe FG, Anne Ferris Lab, Simon Harris FG, Michael Mc Carthy Lab, Mary Lou Mc Donald SF, Michael Mc Grath FF, Eoghan Murphy FG, Derek Nolan Lab, Shane Ross Ind.


  1. Anonymous11:36 AM

    The SHOW goes on!!!!!!!!! This Blog looks like its giving Coronation Street a Run for its money!!! A New Plot every week and many twists and turns...and who knows! it might run for just as long as Corrie!!

  2. Anonymous1:13 AM

    Very impressive!!! Well done to the Blog! What an unbelievable impact it has made. It shows what can be achieved with determination and a refusal to bow to pressure and intimidation. The Blog has blown the Irish Red Cross wide open for all to see. It is amazing what the truth can do and a persistent desire to expose the truth.

    This Blog presents a permanent, forever on record, histroy of the truth behind the Red Cross in Ireland.

    Irish Red Cross has been investigated by RTE's Prime Time, the Comptroller and Auditor General, The Dail Public Accounts Committee and Labour, Fine Gael and Transparency International have regularly called for an independent investigation. Calls for the Vice Chairman's resignation have been made in Dail Eireann, the Minister has written to Irish Red Cross asking them to sort out the issue of long serving board members and there have been numerous calls for the Gardai to be called in.

    The Irish Red Cross response is spin, spin, propoganda and more spin only serving to worsen the situation and further damage their reputuation. No-one beleives them except themselves. Like Fianna Fail Irish Red Cross has become synonomous with wrongdoing and incomptetence and like FF die hards Irish Red Cross beleive they have done nothing wrong. Dillusional people. Like FF IRC is now a disgraced organisation failed by its leaders.

    Congratulations Blog. Big time CONGRATULATIONS!!

  3. Anonymous8:32 AM

    We will look forward to some accountability at last. IRC have shown no respect for its constituents or the general public of Ireland but now they face a bigger power and will surely not hoodwink the PAC.
    For those who believe in the Red Cross as a Movement, there is regret that the ICRC or the IFRC have not been active in brining IRC into line with the obligations of membership.
    Their continuing silence brings the whole Red Cross / Crescent Movement's integity into question.

  4. Anonymous10:46 AM

    In all this, one must feel sorry for those members of the Irish Red Cross who are like the catholic diaspora who lick the later rails at more than regular intervals and deny the sins of the Church, the Red Cross members are now floundering blaming all and sundry for the destruction of this organisation. Not a word of the reflection in the mirror.
    They cannot stand to be ashamed for the victims of the Tsunami, who waitied for assistance, paid for but retained by Lawlor and co. They cannot face the shame for the people of Haiti who sat under leaking roofs whilst the Irish Red Cross used the money meant for them, to pay for education fees, solicitors and consultants to name but a few.

    Now they are busily creating demons of anyone who is responsible for exposing their dirty schemes.

    Guess what its not over and there is more much more to come, if there wasn't I would not be sitting here typing this. I am not ashemed for bringing this into the public arena I am very proud, very, very proud of showing the Central Council of the IRC Red Cross up for what it is a group exposed by its silence.

  5. Anonymous11:48 AM

    Department of Defence officials near destroyed by excellent FG and Labour TDs at Public Accounts Committee hearing in the Dail on 13th October 2011. Department of Defence officials could not have predicted the intensity of the questions and they looked very uncomfortable throughout. RTE's Oireacthas Report covered the proceedings on the night of 13th and RTE's webstie as well as the Irish Times website carried reports of the questioning and the serious revelations about financial irregularities.

    All in all a devastatingly bad day for the image of the Irish Red Cross as well as the Department of Defence.

    Well done to FG and Labour TDs who were excellent on the day and very well briefed and prepared.

  6. Anonymous11:55 AM

    Very informative article in Irish Times of 14th October on more scandals from within the Irish Red Cross. Article is on Page 8 and leads with headline:

    "Irish Red Cross to face questions on overseas aid donations"

    It says the leaders of Irish Red Cross are to be called before the Dail Public Accounts Committee to explain their malpractice etc

    Another nail in the coffin of the reputation of the Society. Still the Irish Red Cross try to spin and bulls*t their way out of another huge embarrassment. The more they try to explain their inexcusable behaviours the worse they make the situation. Who is advising these people? They should be fired for gods sake.

    Get rid of those responsible for the financial scandals and maybe we can then move on. Anything less is shameful and brings more and more humiliation on the organisation with every passing day.

  7. Anonymous11:05 AM

    If you think the Official from the Dept. of Defence looked uncomfortable at the PAC, the look on Donal Fordes face will be something to behold when he is called to give evidence at the next meeting. He will be familliar with this process as he was questioned in 2008 about issues with AIB he was perhaps less than genuine on that occasion.

    An extract from the indo in 2007 - 'However, Donal Forde, who is ultimately responsible for €70bn of outstanding loans as boss of AIB Bank in the Republic, says he has good reason to sleep easy (Irish Independent Nov. 2007. I bet he isn't sleeping too easy now. Mr Forde might have thought in leaving AIB he would get a well earned rest. The Irish Red Cross have gone through more Sec, Gen. than a hungry shark snacking on seals. So lucky fro Forde he has a good pension. Then agin the PAC might do the right thing and forget Forde and bring in the real culprits Lawlor, Noonan, Callan and the rest of the Central Council. Why not? Bring them all in to account for not accounting for millions of public money.

    At last someone is listening about the ongoings within the IRC.

  8. Anonymous11:06 AM

    Well done Noel, they must be just livid anytime they mention your name. They are now suffering the consequences of not listening to you and doing the right thing.

  9. Anonymous4:37 AM

    Since the last floods appeal in Nov 2009 by the Irish Red Cross was so mired in controversy and received very negative media coverage have those people responsible for the delays in the funds disbursement been held accountable and removed from the Society? Are there Board members and staff who were involved in the last floods appeal which was so badly mismanaged for over four months still on the board and the payroll? If so why have they not been held accountable? And lets pray they have no role in the current floods appeal.

    As always no doubt some staff and volunteers involved did tremendous work with dedication and commitment but those senior and responsible for decision making need to be held to account for their mismanagement. Have those same staff been involved in other recent controversial decisions????