'Most shocking decision' - New RTÉ documents lift lid on Ryan Tubridy pay deal
The former Late Late Show presenter has also come out swinging.
Ahead of another day of Oireachtas hearings into the dealings of RTÉ, sparked by the Late Late Show payment scandal, the broadcaster has released new documents. There has also been a joint statement by Ryan Tubridy and his agent, Noel Kelly.
The rolling controversy kicked off a few weeks ago when it was discovered that RTÉ had not disclosed an extra €354,000 in payments to Tubridy for his role as Late Late Show host. Since then, there have been a number of additional revelations and, more recently, resignations over the poorly managed affair. It has led to a special Public Accounts Committee sitting.
New documents supplied by RTÉ to the PAC now state that four people participated in a May 2021 meeting, at which RTÉ 'agreed to underwrite a tripartite deal between Renault and Ryan Tubridy'.
The PAC was shown a copy of a letter from RTÉ's Solicitors office - dated 19 April 2023 - that references a video meeting (May 7th 2021). The letter states the video meeting was attended by former RTÉ Director General Dee Forbes, Ryan Tubridy's agent Noel Kelly, an unnamed solicitor, and a fourth person. That person's name, though, has been redacted from the file. The letter states:
"It was confirmed at that meeting by Dee Forbes on behalf of RTÉ that in consideration of the new agreement, RTÉ guarantees the payments required to be made by Renault under the tripartite agreement and indemnifies Tuttle Productions Limited [Ryan Tubridy's company] in relation to these payments for the duraiton of the contract."
Ryan Tubridy comes out swinging
Ahead of that Public Accounts Committee hearing, at which Ryan Tubridy and Noel Kelly will appear, from 11am this morning, the pair had a statement released on their behalf.
That statement said the PAC is being provided with Tubridy's RTÉ contracts, from 2015 and 2020. Other financial account extracts from Tubridy's company, Tuttle Productions Ltd., and copies of relevant emails are being provided. Tubridy said:
"We will be presenting key documents and new information to the two committees which we believe will bring maximum transparency to the situation and address much of the misinformation which has circulated over the past three weeks.
"This is the first opportunity we have had to set out the full facts of what occurred, and we have spent weeks reviewing all the information about these issues."
In his part of the released statement, Noel Kelly declares the RTÉ decision to underwrite the payment contract with Renault [€75,000 a year over a two-year span, which the broadcaster ended up having to cover that second year] will be 'perhaps the most shocking revelation this morning'.
"Since this controversy began," he said, "RTÉ has tried to distance themselves from this decision. Effectively they have blamed former Director General Dee Forbes for doing a solo run."
Follow all the Oireachtas committee hearings from 11am - featuring Ryan Tubridy's appearance - in our live news feed.
Main image via Rolling News.
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