Conference to Question Executive Accountability and Parliamentary Democracy
Monday, 14 March 2011
The School of Law at NUI Galway, in association with Mason Hayes + Curran solicitors, will host a conference on 26 March entitled Executive Accountability and Parliamentary Democracy. The conference theme is especially topical, and will be discussed in the context of a new Government and the beginning of a new era in Irish Politics and Public Law. Emily O'Reilly, Ombudsman, will provide the keynote speech, with panel presentations by Donncha O'Connell from NUI Galway's School of Law; Catherine Allen, a Partner with Mason Hayes + Curran solicitors; and the political analyst and TCD lecturer, Elaine Byrne. The half-day conference will be introduced by Marie McGonagle, Director of the LLM in Public Law at NUI Galway, and Judge Catherine McGuinness, Adjunct Professor of Law, NUI Galway. Commencing on campus at 9.15am in Áras Moyola, the event also marks the 5th anniversary of the LLM in Public Law at NUI Galway. According to NUI Galway's Donncha O'Connell: "At a time of heightened public awareness of political dysfunction as a contributory factor to current economic woes in Ireland, some attention is beginning to focus on the need for constitutional reform aimed at making the Executive more accountable to Parliament. This is a welcome departure from a quiescent acceptance of the constitutional scheme of things as just the way things are towards a more radical questioning by citizens, who now appreciate that there is a connection between the Constitution and the condition in which real people live". Donncha O'Connell, an expert in Constitutional Law, Human Rights and Law Reform, added: "Offices like that of the Ombudsman struggle to make the Executive - in its many emanations - accountable, but without a clearer connection to Parliament, with appropriate constitutional protection, it is difficult for such accountability to have the necessary level of political impact". The event is free and open to the public. Space is limited and anyone wishing to attend must register online at www.conference.ie.