Baby’s life ended by individuals within National Maternity Hospital in an alleged illegal abortion – Deputy Peader Toibin

‘Fully healthy boy, parents are heartbroken’

Sligo News File

During leaders questions in the Dail, Peader Toibin, TD stated: “Twenty-five months ago, baby Christopher’s life was ended by individuals within the National Maternity Hospital in an alleged illegal abortion.”

Peader Toibin TD,

Christopher, he said, “was a fully healthy boy and his parents are heartbroken. A large number of elements of the law were broken, not least that a senior practitioner signed off on the abortion but never met or examined the mother.”

The family “has met two Ministers for Health and the Chief Medical Officer,” he said.  Toibin said he knew the Taoiseach was aware of the case “because he has spoken to the family directly. However, 25 months later, the family still has not had justice for what happened to Christopher.”

He said: “Peter McKenna has written a detailed report on the family’s case. That report lies on the Minister for Health, Deputy Stephen Donnelly’s, desk and has lain there for weeks without the information being given to the family. The family cannot get access to that report at the moment.

“The Minister once told the family that they could trust him but yet, his office has told the family that if they want to get access to the report, they can ask for it under the freedom of information, FOI, legislation. That is a phenomenally disgraceful response to parents who have had the life of their son ended in a hospital illegally in this country. Will the Taoiseach say today he will put an end to the difficulties this family is experiencing and they will have justice?”

Deputy Bríd Smith:

“On a point of order, the Leas-Cheann Comhairle chastised the last Deputy for going off the point. This Deputy has completely gone off the point. Will the Leas-Cheann Comhairle please correct his contribution?”

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle, Catherine Connolly:

Catherine Connolly, TD

“That is not a point of order and I was about—–“

Deputy Tóibín:

“Can I say, Leas-Cheann Comhairle—–“

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle:

“No, no, no—–“

Deputy Tóibín:

“—–the deafening silence from other political parties in this case is a disgrace?

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle:

“No, Deputy. I am using my discretion to allow Deputies, when they put their hand up, in on the issues that are down and grouped. Deputies have gone to the trouble of tabling questions, as Deputy Gould did and now Deputy Tóibín has done, that bear no resemblance. I will leave it for today. The point has been made and I will certainly be enforcing the rules more rigidly.”

Deputy Tóibín:

“It was an illegal—–“

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle:

“No, no more—–“

Deputy Tóibín:

“Other issues have arisen.”

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle:

“The Taoiseach, to respond.”

Commenting on the case, the Taoiseach said:

Taoiseach Michael Martin

“I do not want to be seen to be ignoring the issue Deputy Tóibín raised and I am aware of it. There are very concerning circumstances surrounding the case in question and I will certainly see if I can examine the latest position with regard to the report.”