Second Fáilte Ireland board member resigns in wake of Spain travel revelations 

Second Fáilte Ireland board member resigns in wake of Spain travel revelations 

Breege O'Donoghue, outside Penneys, Mary Street, Dublin.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times 

A second high profile member of Fáilte Ireland has resigned after it was revealed she travelled to Spain during the summer. 

Breege O'Donoghue, a board member of Fáilte Ireland, spent time in Spain over the summer, a country that is not on Ireland's 'green list' of countries.

Ms O’Donoghue resigned on Tuesday night in the wake of the revelations.

Her resignation was accepted by the Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht, Catherine Martin.

In a statement on Tuesday, the Minister said:

“We are all aware of the devastating impact that COVID19 restrictions have had on the Tourism and hospitality sectors and I am disappointed to learn that a second member of the Board of Fáilte Ireland travelled abroad this Summer, notwithstanding Government advice.

“In order to support our own industry, and in line with the prevailing Government health advice, Fáilte Ireland has been to the forefront in promoting domestic holidays,” she added.

“Ultimately, staying at home supports our tourism industry at a devastating time, showing solidarity in the face of a pandemic that is costing lives and livelihoods across Ireland and the world.” Minister Martin revealed she contacted Ms O’Donoghue on Tuesday evening, at which time Ms O’Donoghue offered her resignation.

“I have accepted her resignation as I believe it would not be tenable for her to continue in the role, given all of the circumstances,” she said.

“I have sought a meeting with the Board of Fáilte Ireland at the earliest opportunity at which I will make clear that members of the Board are expected to show leadership during this time of unprecedented crisis in the sector which they represent.” Ms O’Donoghue is the second board member to resign from her role with Fáilte Ireland in recent months following controversy surrounding travel.

In August, the chairman of Fáilte Ireland Michael Cawley resigned from his position after it emerged he was on a family holiday in Italy.

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