Soccer

"There's no regulation in Irish sport" - Ruth Coppinger TD

Ciaran Bradley
Ciaran Bradley

11:04 16 Apr 2019


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Ruth Coppinger - Solidarity TD and Oireachtas Joint Committee on Transport, Tourism and Sport member - joined the Football Show this evening to discuss the FAI debacle.

Tuesday's Dail Eireann proceedings were dominated by Sport Ireland's second appearance in front of the committee, where Chief Executive John Treacy, Chairman Kieran Mulvey and Sports Minister Shane Ross all appeared to further proceedings around the FAI corporate governance and financing issues.

Sport Ireland read a statement that included the terms of resumption of funding for the FAI, as follows:

  • An audit of the sporting body’s governance and financial control.
  • The establishment of a liaison process with the sporting body to closely monitor, verify and support (as appropriate) the NGB’s implementation of the audit recommendations to verify compliance with the Terms and Conditions of Grant Approval.
  • The liaison process is overseen by Sport Ireland’s Audit & Risk Committee, with periodic updates and recommendations made to the Board.
  • Grant Funding is withheld until sufficient progress has been made on implementing the audit recommendations, and governance and financial control issues have been progressed.
  • Once progress is made on implementing the audit recommendations, and assurance is received of the effectiveness of governance and financial control, staggered payments are generally made to the NGB in question.

Deputy Coppinger spoke about what she had seen in front of the committee in the past fortnight:

"It is as clear as the nose on our face that there is no effective regulation in Irish sport.

"We have had the Olympic Council of Ireland, we have had issues in boxing, and with the FAI.

"John Treacy agreed that there were similarities between the Olympic Council of Ireland and this."

Coppinger expanded into even broader terms:

"Why should the taxpayer be putting public funds into organisations that allow their CEOs to have these massively inflated salaries, unknown expenses [...] and are known to have a lavish lifestyle around being the heads of these organisations.

"I don't think that is good enough, but there doesn't seem to be the political will to change it."

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