The opposition has called on Taoiseach Micheál Martin to sack Simon Coveney over his handling of the Zappone Gate scandal, saying that if he failed to do so, a motion of no-confidence may be tabled.
The remarks were made by Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald, who described Coveney’s behaviour as “not of the standard expected of a minister.”
Speaking to RTÉ, McDonald said that while the Taoiseach had acknowledged that Coveney’s behaviour was “wrong,” a question still stood over “what the Taoiseach is going to do about this?”
“There needs to be accountability now at the heart of government,” she said.
“There needs to be an appropriate sanction for Simon Coveney. The Taoiseach needs to act.”
She added that if the government would not act on this issue, then the Opposition would.
“It’s hard to see how Minister Coveney can stay on, given all that has transpired over the last 8 weeks. And given the fact that, so far, he sticks to a version of events that lacks any credibility whatsoever, there is nobody who believes the version of events that are set out by Minister Coveney.
“Furthermore, the issue of deleting the texts is a very serious one in terms of accountability, and of course the Freedom of Information legislation standards in particular.”
When asked if her party would table a no-confidence motion, the opposition leader replied: “It could come to that.”