Greens leader backs Coveney after `distraction` of Zappone controversy

Eamon Ryan admits the Katherine Zappone controversy has been a distraction.

The Green Party leader has given his backing to the under-pressure Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney.

Senior Ministers have been holding a Cabinet meeting this morning at Dublin Castle.

Eamon Ryan says he still supports Minister Coveney but he has admitted that the Katherine Zappone controversy has been a distraction.

The Opposition says there are still questions to answers despite the Government’s attempts to move on from the controversy.

Speaking on his way into Cabinet, Environment Minister Eamon Ryan said it’s time to move on: ”I think there’s been mistakes made right through the whole process and we have to learn lessons from that and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

Minister Ryan confirmed that he still has confidence in Simon Coveney: ” Yes I do. Over the years I’ve always found him to be a highly capable politician.”

He says the government needs to refocus on the serious issues facing the country: ”We have to make sure we don’t lose focus on the really big issues of climate, housing, the pandemic. This has been a distraction and the sooner we focus on the key challenges facing the country the better. That’s what  people want us to do.”