The Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, has denied that he has questions to answer in relation to a report in today's Irish Times that he received money from businessmen.

Speaking in Co Clare, he said he gave all the information to the Mahon Tribunal about his separation case, about his legal fees, and how he funded everything to show he did not receive money improperly.

He told journalists that it was 'none of their business' if he got something from somebody as a present.

He said today's allegation that he had received payments of between €50,000 and €100,000 was 'off the wall' and 'an unfair, unjust leak'.

Earlier, Mr Ahern confirmed a story in this morning's Irish Times that he received money from a number of individuals in December 1993 when he was Minister for Finance, which was used to pay legal expenses he had incurred.

The Taoiseach said he had given details of the payments to the Mahon Tribunal, as part of his successful effort to refute allegations that he had received money from property developer Eoin O'Callaghan.

But he said it was his own private business, which he did not have to explain to anyone, but that he had given the Tribunal all the information about his separation case at the time, about his legal fees and how he funded them.

Mr Ahern added that he was not answering what he got for his Holy Communion money, his confirmation money, or his birthday.

He said that the only question to answer is: 'Who went to the trouble in such a motivated and scurrilous way leaking what was a confidential session that I had with the tribunal and putting it into the public domain?'

Both Labour and the Greens have called for further explanations from Mr Ahern about exactly what he received and why, in order to clear up remaining questions.

Green Party leader Trevor Sargent has called on the Taoiseach to give a comprehensive account of the payments he received, and the circumstances surrounding them, without further delay.

He said an explanation was the very least that the Irish people need if they are to have confidence in the integrity of the Taoiseach.

Labour Party Finance Spokesperson Joan Burton had earlier called on the Taoiseach to clarify the situation.

Ms Burton said it would be helpful if Mr Ahern made a statement clarifying the purpose of the payments.