Aengus Ó Snodaigh (Dublin South Central, Sinn Fein)
548. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if he has acted on the information relayed to him by a whistleblower that specifically named the Defence Forces official who allegedly ordered the destruction of health and safety documents; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40485/17]
Paul Kehoe (Wexford, Fine Gael)
As I have previously indicated to the House, this matter was raised with me in correspondence where certain allegations were made that the documents had been destroyed. The correspondence in question was also addressed to the Chief of Staff and to the Deputy. I requested a report from the Chief of Staff on the actions taken on foot of the accusation.
He has informed me that the officer named met with the General Officer Commanding the Air Corps. The officer concerned has refuted the allegations made and it should further be noted that documents referred to were not military documents, nor did they carry any military security classification.
Can we suggest that Minister Kehoe and the Chief of Staff meet with the NCO who was ordered to destroy the Health & Safety documents to hear his testimony first hand.
Can we also suggest that the Minister & Chief of Staff meet with the Health & Safety officer who commissioned the reports to determine his recollection of the contents of the Tech Stores Air Quality Report & the Ramp Carbon Monoxide report.
Perhaps they might also ask the Health & Safety officer why the adverse findings in the 1995 ERF report and the recommendations in the 1997 Forbairt report were not communicated to lower ranks and why the recommendations for PPE and chemical training were not acted upon for 20 years.