Casey Threatens to Resign Over Lowry ‘Letter Gate’

By Noel Dundon

By Noel Dundon

North Tipperary County Councillor Jim Casey (FF) has threatened to resign from the Board of Management of Borrisokane Vocational School and North Tipperary Vocational Education Committee unless an apology is issued from the Principal of the school after political literature was handed out to students in advance of the General Election.

A major row erupted at a very tense and edgy monthly meeting of the VEC in Newport after Cllr Casey expressed his disappointment at the manner in which the issue was being dealt with - the issue being the distribution of letters on behalf of Deputy Michael Lowry through pupils in the school prior to the election, asking parents for their vote.

A normally very business-like affair, the VEC meeting was cast into unprecedented turmoil over an issue which has grown and grown since it was first revealed in the local press. The VEC in North Tipperary prides itself as an organisation which puts aside political affiliations and leanings for the good of vocational education in the county and concentrates on finding concensus on issues so that one voice can emerge on every issue. However, this significant spat has left a very sour taste with Cllr Casey, one of the most prominent members and a former Chairman for eighteen years, feeling particularly agrieved that his views were not being taken on board.

Councillor Casey had sent a letter to the Board of Management Chairman- former Councillor Tony McKenna- and the letter had been forwarded to the VEC for consideration. And, after Chief Executive Officer Mr David Leahy raised the matter by stating that new policy had to be drawn up to cater for such situations, Cllr Casey saw red.

Full story in this week’s Tipperary Star