Michael Brennan: How a cosy appointment turned into a political crisis

There is confusion within Fine Gael as to why senior party figures seem eager to do favours for a former independent minister who rejected them.

Katherine Zappone was appointed as a special UN envoy for freedom of expression but did not take up the position after it emerged she had held an outdoor party in the Merrion Hotel attended by 50 people, including Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Picture: Rollingnews

Katherine Zappone managed to persuade Simon Coveney to appoint her as a UN special envoy not once, but twice. The circumstances of her first appointment lie at the heart of how Fine Gael, and the government in general, got itself into yet another fine mess.

Coveney, as Minister for Foreign Affairs, named Zappone as a UN special envoy in September 2019, to assist in Ireland’s campaign to win a seat on the UN Security Council ...