Broadcasting Act 2009

92.

Accountability of director general and chairperson to Oireachtas Committees.

92.— (1) In this section “Committee” means a Committee appointed by either House of the Oireachtas or jointly by both Houses of the Oireachtas (other than the Committee on Members’ Interests of Dáil Éireann or the Committee on Members’ Interests of Seanad Éireann) or a subcommittee of such a Committee.

(2) Subject to subsection (4) , a director general shall, at the request in writing of a Committee, attend before it to give account for the general administration of his or her corporation.

(3) Subject to subsection (4) , the chairperson of a corporation shall, at the request in writing of a Committee, attend before it to represent the views of the board of his or her corporation.

(4) A director general or chairperson shall not be required to give account for, or represent the views of the board of his or her corporation in respect of, any matter which is or has been or may at a future time be the subject of proceedings before a court or tribunal in the State.

(5) Where a director general or chairperson is of the opinion that a matter in respect of which he or she is requested to give an account for, or represent the views of the board of the corporation, is a matter to which subsection (4) applies, he or she shall inform the Committee of that opinion and the reasons for the opinion and, unless the information is conveyed to the Committee at a time when the director general or chairperson is before it, the information shall be so conveyed in writing.

(6) Where the director general or chairperson has informed a Committee of his or her opinion in accordance with subsection (5) and the Committee does not withdraw the request referred to in subsection (2) or subsection (3) in so far as it relates to a matter the subject of that opinion—

( a) the director general or chairperson may, not later than 21 days after being informed by the Committee of its decision not to do so, apply to the High Court in a summary manner for determination of the question whether the matter is one to which subsection (4) applies, or

( b) the chairperson of the Committee may, on behalf of the Committee, make such an application,

and the High Court may determine the matter.

(7) Pending the determination of an application under subsection (6) , the director general or chairperson shall not attend before the Committee to give account for, or represent the views of the board of the corporation in respect of, the matter the subject of the application.

(8) If the High Court determines that the matter concerned is one to which subsection (4) applies, the Committee shall withdraw the request referred to in subsection (2) or subsection (3), but if the High Court determines that subsection (4) does not apply, the director general or chairperson shall attend before the Committee to give account for, or represent the views of the board of the corporation in respect of, the matter.