A former Government colleague of Simon Coveney says the Cork TD hates leaks and was sharply critical of leaks from Cabinet.
Former Independent TD Shane Ross, who was a Cabinet colleague of Mr Coveney’s during the last Government, described him as an ‘admirable’ politician.
“Simon is not a leaker, he is not up to tricks behind your back,” Mr Ross told The Echo this week. “That leads to a great deal of trust.”
Complaints about leaks arose during the Government both Ross and Coveney were part of from 2016-2020 and it is an issue that has continued with the current Government.
“[Simon] got very angry in the Cabinet about leaks, he doesn’t leak himself,” Mr Ross said. “He was the guy who would say in exasperation, ‘it is really impossible to operate in this situation’, to everybody.
“We all knew who was leaking but he never addressed it individually to people. He is not a leaker, he's straight up and he is admirable.”
Mr Ross described the Cork South Central TD as the ‘moving force’ in bringing together the Independent Alliance, of which Mr Ross was a part, and Fine Gael to establish the previous Government.
“Leo [Varadkar] didn’t like the idea at all,” Mr Ross said.
He praised Mr Coveney’s performances both domestically and abroad and believes he will at some point lead an Irish Government.
“I think Simon was the finest minister in the last cabinet, he was absolutely superb,” he said. “He took his role as an international statesman very seriously, he is a really grown up politician. When I think about who would I be proudest to be represented by abroad, it would be Simon Coveney.
“He is just a very good politician and I think will undoubtedly be Taoiseach one day. It would be a gross mis justice if he wasn’t because he has the ability and has the respect.”