The IFA Eyrecourt branch in Galway has called for IFA President Eddie Downey to resign in the wake of the Pat Smith pay scandal.

The motion will now go through to Galway county branch AGM – which has not set a date to meet yet.

Galway Chairman Pat Murphy told Agriland earlier this week that farmers in Galway were more interested in cattle prices and the genomics scheme than Pat Smith’s pay package.

However, a senior Eyrecourt member contacted Agriland today (Saturday) to say it held its AGM on last night (Friday) – hours after the Portlaoise meeting.

Members said it was unacceptable that Eddie Downey was aware of the pay package of its General Secretary and that he should now resign.

The motion was put forward from the floor and will go to the Athenry meeting, when it happens.

At the meeting in Portlaoise Eddie Downey confirmed that he disclosed to Council members the details of the full remuneration package, including pension, of former General Secretary Pat Smith. In 2014, Pat Smith’s total package was €445,000 and in 2013 his total package was €535,000.

“This was not sustainable and unacceptable. Accordingly, we have dealt with it. Going forward, the remuneration package of the IFA General Secretary will be disclosed and will be a matter of public record in the annual accounts,” said Downey.

The IFA Executive Council ratified Bryan Barry as acting General Secretary and Chief Executive of the Association.

It all comes in the wake of Derek Deane’s letter to the IFA Executive Committee calling for transparency on the General Secretary’s pay package.

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