Robert Troy apologises ‘unreservedly’ for declaration-of-interest errors
18th August 2022
Fianna Fáil minister Robert Troy has apologised “unreservedly” for a series of errors in his declarations of interest.
In a statement, Mr Troy said he is now “satisfied” that he has amended his declarations so that they “accurately reflect all my interests for public record”.
Mr Troy, a TD for Longford-Westmeath since 2011, said he has now updated the register of members’ interests to show that he has been renting his former principal residence at Ballynacargy in Westmeath since last November; owned a property at Oak Crest in Mullingar in 2020; and owned another property at Ashfield, also in Mullingar, in 2018.
He has further amended his returns to show he was a director of RMT Management Ltd in 2021. He said this had not previously been recorded because he had been “unaware the process was not formally completed until 2021, hence my error”.
He said he has now correctly included all the properties he had owned under both ‘occupation’ and ‘properties’ on the register.
“I have now declared the sale of Ashlawn… Longford,” he said. It had been “omitted in error as the property was bought and sold that year”.
Mr Troy sold Ashlawn in August 2019 for €163,000, having bought it from a Fianna Fáil councillor, Bill Collentine, for just €82,500 three months previously.
Mr Troy also said he was declaring further information which “does not have to be declared”, but said he was doing so “to ensure full transparency”.
This includes the fact that the property at 39 Cathedral View in Mullingar, of which he had declared 50% ownership, does not have his name on the ownership folio, something Mr Troy said is “clearly an error” and one which he plans to rectify.
The information also includes his having two Rental Accommodation Scheme contracts with Westmeath County Council. He said he has also disclosed details “in relation to negotiations for potential sales of properties”.
He added that his then girlfriend, who is now his wife, had been a secretary at RMT Management, that he had provided details of the sale of the garden of a property he owns in north Dublin, and he has now registered an inter-parliamentary trip to Taiwan in 2013.
Mr Troy said he takes his “role and responsibility as a TD for Longford-Westmeath and minister of State very seriously”, adding that he fully appreciates the “seriousness” of his mistake.
I sincerely regret that my omissions and errors could be seen as my deflection or disregard of my responsibilities as public representative.
“I take full responsibility and I apologise unreservedly to my constituents, colleagues in Government, to the Dáil, and to SIPO for these errors and omissions,” he said.
He added that he is aware of “inaccuracies” shared by specific media outlets regarding his alleged insistence that rent monies due to him be paid in cash.
This relates to Mr Troy’s former property at Ashfield.
“I have reviewed my records on such, and I fully refute such claims. On full review of my records, I can confirm that Westmeath County Council paid rent for this property through electronic transfer from 1 August 2011 to the date the tenancy ended,” he said.
He also fully refutes “inference or implication of any improper tax conduct on my part. I am fully tax compliant as a landlord and public representative”.
A spokesperson for the Taoiseach said: “The Taoiseach accepts and acknowledges Minister Troy’s apology, and welcomes his comprehensive statement to clarify the issues, and his amendments to the Register of Members’ Interests