Sunday Independent terminates columnist's contract after discovering fake Twitter account
“We regard Eoghan Harris’s involvement with this account as a betrayal of trust and as such his contract has been terminated."
The Sunday Independent has terminated the contract of columnist Eoghan Harris after it emerged he was part of an anonymous Twitter account.
The decision to terminate his contract was taken by editor Alan English this week, after Harris admitted being involved in the running the anonymous Twitter account set up in February last year.
English said that after reviewing the account, many comments “went far beyond what I would describe as fair and reasonable comment. Under no circumstances would such material have been published in our newspaper or on Independent.ie.”
“This account was set up in February 2020 under the name of Barbara J Pym, mostly posting tweets about aspects of Irish politics," English said.
“Many of the views expressed – such as opposition to ‘Sinn Féin pressure for a united Ireland’ are in keeping with those articulated by Eoghan Harris in his Sunday Independent column.
“Eoghan has accepted that he was one of the founders of the account. He has also stated to me that he was ‘one of a group of people that contributed to a Barbara Pym entity’.”
English added: “We regard Eoghan Harris’s involvement with this account as a betrayal of trust and as such his contract has been terminated.
“Eoghan has been synonymous with the Sunday Independent for two decades and has been one of its sharpest and most distinctive opinion writers. While we have sometimes had our differences, I have also enjoyed working with one of the most unique voices in Irish public discourse.
“On a personal level, I very much regret that his involvement with the paper has ended in this way.”