Portlaoise finally gets Garda superintendent

pOrtlaoise is finally set to get a new superintendent nearly five months after the post was vacated.

pOrtlaoise is finally set to get a new superintendent nearly five months after the post was vacated.

Garda HQ confirmed that Superintendent Yvonne O’Connor and Superintendent Sarah Meyler have been appointed to the Laois-Offaly Division.

The two garda are due to fill roles at Portlaoise and another station in the division. The Portlaoise post has been vacant since February when Supt Philip Lyons retired.

No detail was available on the two gardai and the Garda press office said that the Garda Commissioner would decide where they would be based.

It is expected that the supertinendents will be at their desks by the end of the week.

However, there was no news on the vacant Chief Superintendent Post which is undertood to be the subject of a national review of divisions by the Garda Commissioner.

Laois Offaly TD Charlie Flanagan welcomed the appointments which he said had been made with the approval of two Government Ministers.

The TD, who this week came under pressure to do more to address cuts to local policing, accepted that other issues must be addressed.

“I am very pleased that that the appointments have been confirmed.

“The next step is to address the garda car fleet and the stations in Mountmellick in Clonaslee.

“I am arranging an early meeting with the news superintendent to discuss garda rosters and station opening hours,” he said.

Deputy Flanagan said there was “justified disquiet in Mountmellick” over its garda station adding that Clonasslee situation is also a concern.

The TD said he had been under pressure over the Portlaoise vacancy but said he agreed that the situation had become “unsatisfactory”.

He said the post was filled after being cleared by the Minster for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin.

Deputy Flanagan said a review is underway at Garda Commissioner level on the Portlaoise-based Laois/Offaly Chief Superinentent post which has also been vacant since last February.

Deputy Flanagan said there must also be a greater role for Garda Reserves working with the Gardai and community alert groups around the Laois.