EU Commissioner Phil Hogan resigned following the dinner travel controversy
Dublin: European Union Commissioner Phil Hogan has resigned, much to the dismay of the Irish government over the Galway Clifden dinner travel controversy.
His decision to resign came under multiple pressures. Phil Hogan, a native of Kilkenny, said he resigned because he saw the controversy over the dinner and travel as weakening his future career.
Taoiseach Michael Martin, Tanaiste Leo Varadkar and the Minister of Communications, Eamon Ryan welcomed Hogan’s resignation. Meanwhile, as Hogan resigned the appointment for a new EU commissioner Negotiations were also active at the government level. The names of Foreign Minister Simon Coveney, European Parliament Vice President Mairead McGuinness and former government minister Richard Bruton are being considered.
It was revealed that he had attended an Oireachtas Golf Society event in Clifford, Galway, last week, and was stopped by the Garda for using the phone while driving. Despite the apology for both incidents, the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Communications Minister were not satisfied with Hogan’s explanation.
Last day, the government publicly announced that the stance should be reconsidered. Hogan, who had once publicly announced that he would not resign, stepped down with embarrassment.
During the controversy, Hogan publicly stated that Ireland’s rules of Covid control are not acceptable and therefore would not abide by them. It was then that the government issued a statement announcing the difficulty in approving Ireland’s EU commissioner for non – compliance with the Covid guidelines. Hogan said he was resigning because he realised the controversy was a departure from his role as EU trade commissioner.
Hogan announced his resignation while speaking to RTE News. He regretted the inconvenience his work had caused to the people and government of Ireland. In a statement Hogan said he was proud to have served as European Commissioner and committed himself during his 40-year political career.
European Commission President Ursula von der Layen thanked Hogan for his hard work as EU Commissioner. Hogan had given explanation regarding the controversy to Ursula von, President of the European Commission.
In an interview after his resignation, Hogan stated that he did not violate the law, stating his Covid test was negative. However, the government repeatedly stated that Hogan had violated the law. The government said Hogan, who arrived from Brussels, had to restrict travel for 14 days.