Mairia Cahill - Prime Time, Order of Business and Irish Independent
Posted on October 24, 2014
Read my response when the Irish Independent asked women TD's and Senators the questions - 'Do you believe Mairia Cahill? Does the republican movement have questions to answer over its handling of sexual abuse allegations and why?' http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/politics/mairia-cahill-what-women-tds-and-senators-say-30674870.html
And finally I spoke on the matter during the Order of Business.
Order of Business, Wednesday 22nd October 2014.
It is a very serious matter and I am glad the Taoiseach is meeting Ms Cahill today and that the Tánaiste met her last week. I understand the matter will be discussed in the Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality but Senator Darragh O'Brien raised a very serious issue about the way in which abusers were dealt with by Sinn Féin-IRA and, in particular, the allegations we are hearing in respect not only of Ms Cahill but also other victims of abuse, whereby abusers were sent away. That was the way in which Sinn Féin-IRA dealt with them.
We have developed careful structures to ensure that abusers are not sent onwards to carry out further abuse in other areas. We have seen in the past how, tragically, abusers like Brendan Smith were moved from parish to parish and jurisdiction to jurisdiction, abusing children wherever they went. There is a huge issue of child protection that Sinn Féin-IRA have not addressed. This is not ancient history. The abuse Ms Cahill described happened to her in the late 1990s and the interrogations she credibly claims were carried out by the IRA also happened in the late 1990s. This case raises very serious political and legal questions about child protection.