RTÉ would publish Kielty salary if presenter is willing

Patrick Kielty

The new Late Late Show host Patrick Kielty's salary will be made public if he agrees, according to Irish broadcaster RTÉ.

Adrian Lynch, the acting deputy director general, made the remarks earlier on Wednesday during a meeting of an Oireachtas committee.

In light of the controversy surrounding the payments made in secret to former host Ryan Tubridy, there have been calls for the disclosure of Mr. Kielty's salary.

Over the course of the broadcaster's earnings report from 2017 to 2022, Mr. Tubridy received €345,000 (£296,000) more than that amount.

Depending on agreement from all parties, the committee was informed that Mr. Kielty's salary details might be made public by Friday.

The broadcaster's chair, Siin N. Raghallaigh, had earlier claimed that it had not lived up to expectations.

In her statement to the media scrutiny committee, Ms. Raghallaigh expressed regret for the "egregious breach of trust with the public.".

The committee was informed by her that "the public, RTÉ staff, and public representatives are hurt and angry.".

"We are aware that the public no longer has faith in us.

"We are aware that trust is valuable and that, once lost, it is challenging to regain. ".

The public service broadcaster, which is partially funded by a license fee, will work to rebuild trust, according to Ms. N. Raghallaigh, and confidence can be reestablished.

She also expressed regret to the 1,800 employees of the company for their "distress.".

Following the disclosure of the payments on Tuesday, RTÉ employees—many of whom had their pay frozen in recent years—organized protests outside their offices.

She concluded, "I want to reassure this committee and the public that the board is committed to making sure we get full clarity on this, that there is accountability for it, and that it never happens again.

The Public Accounts Committee will meet with representatives from RTÉ on Thursday.

The broadcaster's governance and culture will be reviewed externally, the Irish minister for media ordered last week.

Staff staging protests outside RTÉ headquarters in Donnybrook, Dublin

In response to the payments scandal, RTÉ employees organized demonstrations outside of its offices across the island.

The company's auditors informed the board of certain transactions on March 17, which led to the discovery of the payments made to Mr. Tubridy.

Representatives from RTÉ refuted claims that Mr. Tubridy's announcement that he was leaving the Late Late Show was related to the discovery of the invoices.

According to a spokesperson, Dee Forbes, the former director general of RTÉ who resigned earlier this week due to the scandal, will not testify before the committee due to health reasons.

During the hearing, it came out that Ms. N. Raghallaigh had asked Ms. Forbes to resign on June 16—ten days before the previous director general did so.

The resignation, according to Fine Gael TD Brendan Griffin, shouldn't have been accepted because it prevented the committee from summoning Ms. Forbes to appear before it.

Ms. Forbes still has the option, according to Ms. N. Raghallaigh, to testify before the committee.

According to RTÉ's interim deputy director general Adrian Lynch, only Ms. Forbes could have known that Mr. Tubridy's compensation figures were off.

However, during a Dáil (lower house of the Irish Parliament) session, Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar questioned the statement's veracity.

The only person who was aware of the falsely reported payments, according to him, was Ms. Forbes.

In addition, Mr. Varadkar said that during committee hearings, RTÉ representatives should exhibit "nothing but full and open transparency.".

Ryan Tubridy

Since the payments were revealed, Mr. Tubridy has not hosted his weekday radio program.

In March, Mr. Tubridy announced his resignation as host of The Late Late Show on RTÉ One, one of the longest-running TV chat programs in history.

Since 2009, when he replaced Pat Kenny as host, he had been doing so.

Later this year, the comedian from Northern Ireland, Patrick Kielty, who was named as his replacement, will take over hosting duties.

Additionally, Mr. Tubridy is a weekday host on RTÉ Radio One, but he hasn't been on air since the payments scandal broke.

The broadcaster acknowledged on Wednesday that contract negotiations for the presenter have been put on hold while the payment disclosure procedures are being worked out.

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