FORMER attorney general John Rogers has lashed out at government politicians for failing to take responsibility for their decisions and has outlined proposals for radical political reform.
"In Irish politics, trust in government and leaders has been undermined because office holders visibly and plainly pursue their responsibilities irresponsibly," said Rogers, who was attorney general from 1984 to 1987.
He cited Charlie McCreevy's decision to decentralise 10,000 civil servants without advance consultation, the John O'Donoghue expenses affair and the Willie O'Dea affidavit as examples.
His comments came during an address to a British Irish Association Conference at Oxford yesterday where he outlined plans for radical political reform. He suggested that a number of TDs would be elected by the country as a single constituency and "it would be a rule that the Taoiseach and, say, five ministers should be drawn from this cohort of deputies".
He also believes that "the presidency should be seen now as a secular moral force" that could pursue a political reform agenda as it is not in the interests of politicians to pursue such reforms.
Rogers attacked Taoiseach Brian Cowen who has "not accepted personal or political responsibility for the current state of the Irish economy". On the other hand, he complimented Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan for clearly laying out his Nama policy before the Dáil. Rogers believes: "This was probably the clearest act of political leadership in the country for a decade."