Mick Wallace Our 4th Podcast on #coronavirus #Sanctions and the failure of #EU to show Solidarity inside Europe and beyond. Pres… https://t.co/S9lcBTPQgE
Mick Wallace And now we have #EU High Representative @JosepBorrellF telling us that it's great news that #NorthMacedonia have si… https://t.co/l5x81Ay11M
Mick Wallace #COVID19 - Sadly, many #Israeli Defence Forces treat people of #Palestine worse than they treat animals - #Israel d… https://t.co/ozuTijM3wm
Mick Wallace RT @DerbyChrisW: My friend @wallacemick is absolutely right to point out that while Cuba and China have demonstrated solidarity with Italy…

To ask the Minister for Defence his plans to reform the office of the Ombudsman of the Defence Forces; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

- MICK WALLACE.

FOR ORAL ANSWER ON WEDNESDAY, 7TH MAY, 2014.

REPLY

I met with the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces, Mr. Patrick Anthony McCourt on the 16th April 2014 and discussed the caseload currently going through his office in addition to other general matters of interest.

I was also updated on progress made to date on the publication of the 2012 and 2013 annual reports of the Ombudsman.  Due to particular circumstances, relating to High Court proceedings arising during 2013, the Annual Report for 2012 of the ODF has not yet been published. The Ombudsman indicated that the 2012 report will be available by the end of June 2014 and the 2013 report will be published as soon as possible thereafter.

There are no plans at present for changes to the operation of the office of the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces. The office of the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces is well established. A number of administrative and systemic issues identified by the Ombudsman have been addressed by Defence management. This has contributed to improvements in procedures and policies within the Defence Forces.  I am satisfied that the current system is working well.

The Ombudsman has full independence and autonomy in the discharge of his statutory functions.  The primary role of the Ombudsman, which is provided for in the Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004, is to provide an independent appeals process for members of the Defence Forces. Such appeals arise where a complaint has been processed through the internal Defence Forces “Redress of Wrongs” process but the complainant remains dissatisfied, either with the outcome, or with the manner in which the complaint was handled.  The 2004 Act also provides that, subject to certain conditions, the Ombudsman may accept complaints directly from former members of the Defence Forces.

To ask the Minister for Defence in view of the increased movement of United States troops and arms into the region surrounding Ukraine and the Russian border, if he will consider authorising members of the Defence Forces to inspect US military aircraft transiting through Shannon Airport; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

-MICK WALLACE

FOR ORAL ANSWER ON WEDNESDAY, 7TH MAY, 2014.

REPLY

An Garda Síochána has the primary responsibility for law and order, including the protection of the internal security of the State. Among the roles assigned to the Defence Forces is the provision of Aid to the Civil Power (ATCP) which, in practice, means to assist An Garda Síochána when requested to do so.

There is ongoing and close liaison between An Garda Síochána and the Defence Forces regarding security matters. The Defence Forces have deployed personnel to Shannon Airport, in response to requests for support from An Garda Síochána, since 5th February 2003.

With regard to the request for consideration of inspections of aircraft, the Defence Forces have no responsibility for searching US Military aircraft that land at Shannon.

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namaleaks

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Namaleaks is a project that seeks to uncover possible injustice and poor practice related to NAMA (National Asset Management Agency) and financial institutions in Ireland.

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