Ireland’s new Marine Minister has been sacked from his role amid controversy surrounding a three-month road ban he received for drink-driving in 2016.
RTÉ News reports that Fianna Fáil TD Barry Cowen’s appointment as Minister of Agriculture and the Marine was terminated by President Michael D Higgins on the advice of Taoiseach and Fianna Fail leader Michael Martin.
Responding to the news on Twitter, Cowen said he was “both surprised and disappointed with this decision”.
(1) The Taoiseach informed me this evening by phone that he was removing me from office as Minister for Agriculture.— Barry Cowen (@CowenBarry) July 14, 2020
I am both surprised and disappointed with this decision.
The Taoiseach will serve as acting minister of the department until a replacement is appointed.
Cowen had only taken on the brief at the end of June following the formation of the new coalition Government led by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.
Last Thursday he had a first meeting, via video conferencing, with the EU Fisheries Commissioner to discuss matters related to fisheries arrangements with the UK post-Brexit.