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Bertie Ahern resigns from Fianna Fáil

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 12:48 am    Post subject: Bertie Ahern resigns from Fianna Fáil Reply with quote

div class="track"img alt="" src="" width="1" height="1" //divp class="standfirst"Former Irish PM steps down in wake of corruption inquiry, but says decision was 'political' move/ppBertie Ahern, the former prime minister of Ireland, has resigned from his political party in the wake of a corruption inquiry./ppHe said his decision to leave Fianna Fáil was a "political" move rather than an admission that he had lied about his past finances./ppAhern was on the brink of being thrown out of the party he led to three successive general election victories after the inquiry, known as the Mahon tribunal, found money from supporters had been deposited in his bank account./ppWriting in Ireland's Sunday Independent newspaper, he said he was "deeply saddened" by a motion to expel him, calling it a "grave injustice". He said he had decided to tender his resignation to avoid becoming a source of political division./pp"I appreciate the support that party members have pledged to me unprompted in the past week," he said. "I have decided the best way that I can now serve Fianna Fáil is to tender my resignation as a member of the party."/ppAhern's expulsion had been proposed by current party leader Micheál Martin, who said the former prime minister was guilty of a betrayal of trust./ppThe Mahon tribunal, which sat for more than 15 years, has shamed a series of senior figures in Fianna Fáil, once considered the dominant party in Irish politics./ppIt stopped short of accusing Ahern of corruption, but said he failed to "truthfully account" for sources of money he lodged in his bank account when he was finance minister in the 1990s./ppAhern says donations he received from wealthy party supporters into his account were not backhanders but "dig-outs" from friends to help him cover legal bills after his divorce./ppBut the report rejected Ahern's explanation. It said he had failed to "truthfully account" for sums amounting to 250,000 Irish punts received between 1993 and 1995./ppAhern wrote in the Sunday Independent that he intended to challenge the tribunal's findings. "I am hurt and disappointed by the findings of the Mahon Tribunal," he said. "At the outset, I want to make it clear I have done nothing wrong or dishonest. I believe a grave injustice has been done to me."/pdiv class="related" style="float: left; margin-right: 10px; margin-bottom: 10px;"ullia href=""Bertie Ahern/a/lilia href=""Ireland/a/lilia href=""Europe/a/li/ul/divdiv class="author"a href=""Barry Neild/a/divbr/div class="terms"a href="" copy; 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our a href=",,933909,00.html"Terms Conditions/a | a href=""More Feeds/a/divp style="clear:both" /
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