Simon Harris ‘gives statement to gardai’ as part of Leo Varadkar contract leak investigation
Minister Simon Harris is believed to have provided a written statement to the gardaí as part of a top level leak probe.
The Irish Mirror revealed yesterday that Detectives from the elite NBCI (National Bureau of Criminal Investigation) unit are investigating the alleged leaking of documents by Leo Varadkar when he was Taoiseach in April 2019.
The document in question was a draft copy of the new €210million GP contract being negotiated between the Government and the IMO (Irish Medical Organisation).
- Mr Varadkar provided the document, marked ‘confidential,’ to the head of a rival organisation, the NAGP (National Association of General Practitioners), of which Mr Varadkar’s friend, Dr Maitiú Ó Tuathail, was the head.
There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing on Mr Harris’ part.
But the Mirror has learned that the current Minister for Higher Education, who was Minister for Health in 2019, has provided a voluntary written statement to detectives.
A spokeswoman for Mr Harris told the Irish Mirror this afternoon: “The Minister cannot comment on an ongoing Garda investigation.”
Current Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, is the only senior Government Minister to comment on the controversy so far.
He has promised to cooperate with any inquiries if requested.
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The complaint that prompted the Garda investigation came from a senior official in the Department of Health.
Mr Donnelly was asked about the Mirror story on RTE’s This Week programme, and whether he was aware the whistleblower came from his own department.
He said: “No, I wasn’t (aware) actually, the first I heard about it was being reported in the media.” https://get-latest.convrse.media/?
The Minister was asked if has been approached by the gardaí about the matter, and Mr Donnelly added: “No, I haven’t.
“Obviously I will, it goes without saying, if they do.