Published on November 17, 2023, 2:41 am

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In a surprising revelation, the RTÉ Board, led by Siún Ní Raghallaigh, has admitted to significant oversights regarding the production of ‘Toy Show The Musical.’ This misstep resulted in a financial loss of €2.2 million for RTÉ, which has had a significant impact on their resources. Importantly, the board recognized that they failed to exercise control and neglected to thoroughly evaluate the project. They have also acknowledged that there was no established approval process for the musical and no risk assessment was conducted prior to its commencement.

Further details about the board’s involvement in the project were brought to light through a Freedom of Information request. Minutes from an RTÉ Board meeting revealed that while the board was informed about the project, they did not take any action to halt its progress. This lack of intervention is now deemed as a major oversight.

In another development, RTÉ Director General Kevin Bakhurst received praise from the board for his decision not to renew Ryan Tubridy’s contract. This decision came about due to a breakdown in trust between Tubridy and RTÉ, largely influenced by Tubridy’s public response to a report on payment irregularities involving him and the broadcaster. The board fully supported Bakhurst’s decision, seeing it as an essential step towards restoring faith and rebuilding trust.

To aid in financial recovery, RTÉ, under Media Minister Catherine Martin’s guidance, has put forward a plan to cap salaries for all employees at the level of pay received by the director-general. This strategy includes implementing extensive cost-saving measures and potentially cutting up to 400 jobs over the next five years. Despite these austerity measures, the Government has agreed to provide an additional €56 million in funding to assist RTÉ in managing shortfalls this year and next year. However, these proposed job cuts have raised concerns among the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.

This article is based on information presented online but has been rewritten to adhere to guidelines surrounding CIO and Generative AI.


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