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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 8 May 1990

Vol. 398 No. 4

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Defence Forces Personnel Discharge Applications.

Pat Rabbitte


22 Mr. Rabbitte asked the Minister for Defence the number of personnel who requested permission to buy their way out of the Defence Forces during 1989; the number in respect of whom permission was granted; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

In accordance with section 75 of the Defence Act, 1954, a member of the Permanent Defence Force is entitled to his discharge by purchase.

In 1989, a total of 249 members — including recruits — applied for discharge by purchase. In the event only 194 proceeded with their applications and were subsequently discharged.

Has there been any analysis carried out of the reason the other 55 members did not proceed with their application? Has there been any analysis carried out to indicate whether it was due exclusively to the high rate of buy-out or for any other reason?

We can have that examined. There is nothing abnormal in the pattern.

Could the Minister indicate the spread — from wherever the figures emanate — whether from the Army, Naval Service or Air Corps; what are the percentage figures for each group?

I do not have that information here but I will get it for the Deputy.

How do the figures compare with those for previous years?

There has been no change in the pattern; there is nothing alarming about them or anything like that. However, I would be interested myself in ascertaining the division of the figures within the particular services in order to ascertain which are suffering more than others.