High salary won’t guarantee a good Garda commissioner

 Two (2) Letters of today (14th. September 2017) in Irish Independent  – the first from one of our own GSRMA Members, Tony Fagan, Wexford Branch GSRMA.  Well written and well presented Tony. Sure Mary Lou has all the answers – not too fond of answering the real questions put to her, or her party.

I write in connection with the wild rash of comments regarding the now vacant position of Garda commissioner, who should replace the former office holder, and that a higher salary would need to be offered to a replacement.

Is a higher salary or a person from outside the force or outside the jurisdiction going to get a better person for the position?

I say it would be highly unlikely and I also believe there are excellent officers within the ranks of An Garda Síochána capable of providing the leadership needed.

Politicians are queuing up to tell us what is required. Róisín Shortall stated: “It’s time for exceptional measures, starting with the recruitment of a whole new senior management team – some of whom should be recruited from outside the jurisdiction.”

Regarding the present team, she said: “They need to ask themselves if they are part of the problem”, without explaining that all the members of senior rank within the Garda Síochána have been appointed by politicians, some with a Fine Gael background, others with a Fianna Fáil, Labour or with some coalition agreement. Not many would make their way up the promotion ladder otherwise, so let us have a bit of honesty from the politicians.

Mary Lou McDonald stated: “There needs to be some soul-searching.” To that, I would suggest she starts that policy within her own ranks.

Tony Fagan Enniscorthy, Co Wexford


The unacceptable odium heaped on the Garda by Sinn Féin, of all people, goes to show that Ireland has such a very short memory that this can be allowed.

We know only too well the form of ‘policing’ the so-called ‘republican movement’ has been associated with in the recent past.

Robert Sullivan Bantry, Co Cork

5 Responses to High salary won’t guarantee a good Garda commissioner

  1. noel September 15, 2017 at 12:17 pm #

    I agree with Tony Fagan when he poses the question “Is a higher salary or a person from outside the jurisdiction going to get a better person for the position”, It is my opinion that if the Government go down that road they will regret it. I fail to understand how the next Commissioner should come from “outside” the current ranks as stated by Brendan Howlin. I note that he has not given any reasons how that would improve the situation. Brndan should get of the radar now as well as all the other politicians – all jumping on the band wagon. Do they consider that they are experts in selecting a replacement for Noreen O’Sulliva, who incidentally performed very well indeed under trying conditions and did not hesitate to put politicians like Mick Wallace in his place. Without a shadow of doubt the new Commissioner should come from within the force who has the knowledge and experience and aware of the culture existing in this great little Nation and be given time perhaps to change the culture that exists, which seems to be at the nub of this whole debacle. There are many fine Officers in An Garda Siochana and I hope that our Government will select one of them to replace Noreen.

    Noel Hynes – Naas Branch of GSRMA.

  2. Eugene September 15, 2017 at 6:58 pm #

    I would like to agree with the opinion that a higher salary should be proposed for the new Commissioner, 180k is quite enough. Neither do I believe that He/She should come from overseas, If there is a well qualified Officer from the PSNI in the running I could live with that. Yes, I am fed up with polictians giving their opinions on what is wrong in the Organisation. Firstly, I believe that the Dept. of Justice needs a radical shake up. Like the Gardai , all Depts. have carried on from 1921 without any change. the Gardai largely have followed the RIC plan . I hope that the Policing Board do the right thing and ignore the Mouths that are so vocal, and I include Jim O’Callaghan in that. Of course the Shinners will have a lot to say, We all know what they really think about the Guards. Mary Lou has some cheek to open her mouth. Wallace and Daly rarely left Noirin alone, and of course we cannot forget Alan Kelly, his contribution at the Public Accounts bet all, how he got away with that, summary execution without trial. Finally, I’m not sure that the Policing Authority will be independent enough to do the right thing.

  3. Tom September 16, 2017 at 6:25 pm #

    What is lacking the the Job is Performance Development& Review for all Members.

  4. John Brennan September 17, 2017 at 11:54 am #

    Whoever is appointed Commissioner must be prepared to demand and receive adequate funding to ensure proper manning levels, equipment and training.
    How many times have we seen politically appointed senior Garda officers tell the media that they have all the resources needed when the dogs in the street knew that manpower had been cut by thousands, Gardai were driving cars with over 100000 miles on the clock, no public order vans in Districts etc.
    And of course the Department of Justice is escaping all criticism despite playing a major part in controlling the Commissioner

  5. Tom September 20, 2017 at 12:51 pm #

    In my view a Cadetship Programme is required for recruitment of potential Managers in the Garda Siochana. This could form part of the current CAO System. Most outside police forces have it.

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