Tony Holohan says he is no longer proceeding with Trinity secondment after controversy
"I do not wish to see the controversy of the last few days continuing," the CMO said.
Dr Tony Holohan has said he is no longer proceeding with his planned secondment as a professor at Trinity College Dublin and that he intends to retire as Chief Medical Officer (CMO) later this year.
Last month, it was announced that Dr Holohan would be stepping away from his position as CMO to take on a new role as Professor of Public Health Strategy and Leadership at Trinity.
However, the move raised eyebrows this week when it was revealed the Department of Health would fund the move under the same pay and conditions as his existing contract.
As a result, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said on Friday that the secondment of Holohan had to be paused until he received a report on the matter on Monday, while Tánaiste Leo Varadkar admitted that nobody in Government was "happy" regarding the situation.
Now, in a surprise statement on Saturday, the CMO said he is no longer proceeding with the secondment, stating he does not want to see the controversy of recent days continue.
"I have decided not to proceed with my secondment as Professor of Public Health Leadership and Strategy, Trinity College Dublin," he wrote.
"I intend to retire as CMO with effect from 1 July to allow the Department of Health sufficient time to advance the process of appointing my successor.
"I do not wish to see the controversy of the last few days continuing.
"In particular, I wish to avoid any further unnecessary distraction that this has caused to our senior politicians and civil servants.
"My strong belief is that this was a significant opportunity to work with the university sector to develop much-needed public health capacity and leadership for the future.
"In this regard, I would like to thank Trinity College and the Provost for their foresight and support in establishing this role.
"Following my departure, I look forward to sharing my knowledge and expertise outside of the public service."
Main image via Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie