A number of regional branches have called for the board of IFA to step down including IFA President Eddie Downey and allow an election take place.

At an emergency county meeting of Galway IFA in Athenry last night (Tuesday) a number of motions were put forward including that everyone who received Con Lucey’s letter last year to step down.

One man who attended the meeting in Galway said anyone who was aware of and read Con Lucey’s letter last year should step down. He said this was the start of the warning something was wrong and people chose to ignore it.

“Anyone who knew anything and said nothing is guilty. They were on a gravy train and now the gravy train has derailed.”

The call for the Executive Board to step down was put forward in Longford where Ballinalee IFA branch met. The branch called for all the Executive Board of IFA should step down.

This would mean that the current President Eddie Downey, Deputy President Tim O’Leary, Treasurer Jer Bergin, and the four regional Chairmen (Munster – James McCarthy; Leinster – James Murphy; Ulster/North – Bert Stewart; Connacht – Tom Turley) step down.

Richard Connell of West Cork IFA said at a meeting last night the motion for the Executive Board to step down was put forward and he would relay this at the Executive Council meeting taking place today (Wednesday) in Dublin.

The West Cork County Chairman said there is massive anger at grassroots level and it’s easy to understand why.

“We have totally lost confidence. I represent my members in west Cork and that’s what I’ll be putting forward [at today’s Executive Council meeting].

“They’ve no option but to step down and we need to get a new mandate.

“I always represent my members in west Cork and I was unhappy with the council’s decision the last day.

“I represent the grassroots and if they want the board to step down and a new election then that’s what I’ll put forward.”

He said that confidence was lost when Con Lucey’s letters were not acted upon.

IFA President’s Income

Meanwhile, just yesterday Agriland revealed that the income of IFA President Eddie Downey, which was confirmed by IFA, of €147,000 is also topped up with directors’ fees and expenses.

IFA confirmed to Agriland that the €147,000 salary just comprises his salary from the IFA.

It comes in the wake of turmoil in the IFA following the shock resignation of Pat Smith and the revelations around his salary. The position of IFA President sees Eddie Downey hold a seat on the boards of a number of high profile organisations, for which he receives financial remuneration.

Eddie Downey is in receipt of

  • Directors fees from Bord Bia of €11,970; and,
  • Directors fees from FBD of €30,000.

This brings the income of Eddie Downey from the role of IFA President up to €188,970.