The Supreme Court has dismissed a challenge by the Limerick lecturer, Denis Riordan, to the nomination of Hugh O'Flaherty to the European Investment Bank. Mr Riordan appealed to the Supreme Court after his challenge was rejected by the High Court.
The Supreme Court said that the Constitution did not entitle the courts to constrain the Government from carrying out its executive function in making the nomination. The court also said that the issue was entirely a matter of Irish law and that Mr Riordan could not have his case referred to the European Court of Justice.
The Minister for Finance, Charlie McCreevy, has welcomed the Supreme Court decision. He said that the Irish nomination process for the position of Vice President of the European Investment Bank was now complete and was entirely a matter for the bank itself.
Hugh O'Flaherty's nomination to the post of vice-president of the European Investment Bank has been the subject of legal proceedings for almost 2 months. Denis Riordan, a marine communications lecturer from County Limerick, began his challenge at the end of May. He claimed that he and other Irish people should have had the opportunity to apply for the job of vice-president of the European Investment Bank. The Government, he said, had not informed the public that the job was available.
The High Court rejected his arguments. However, Mr Riordan claimed that the High Court judge was mistaken. He said that the Government acted outside its powers by making the nomination. Lawyers for the State said that the Government had done nothing wrong. Mr Riordan had said that he would bring the case to the European Court of Justice if he lost this appeal.