A County Sligo-based former worker for Bóthar says he is ‘very saddened’ by the news of the scandal that has now engulfed the charity, describing it as like hearing of ‘the brutal death of an old friend.’
Pat McCarrick, from Cloonacool, was fundraising projects director with Bóthar from 2004 to 2014.
He says that over all the years he was involved with the charity, he worked with a lot of really very good people who were acting in good faith, as he did himself.
Bóthar provided livestock to people in developing countries in an effort to provide a sustainable means of overcoming hunger and poverty.
However, the charity is now at the centre of a major financial scandal arising from allegations of misappropriation of hundreds of thousands of euro involving two founders and two former chief executives.
One of the former chief executives has admitted he shared tens of thousands of euro in cash with two founding members of the organisation.
David Moloney, who retired as chief executive in February after eight years in the position, said he and the former chief executive, the late Peter Ireton, misappropriated hundreds of thousands of euro in cash that the charity was led to believe went to nuns who work with the poor in Tanzania.
Mr Ireton, one of the founders of Bóthar, died at his home last week.
Mr Moloney has also admitted that he “concocted” payments from Bóthar to a company in England in association with another man, Billy Kelly, for the benefit of both men.
Mr Moloney has now admitted that he got £36,000 from money that nominally went to the English company and said Mr Kelly received £40,000, the Bóthar chairman, Harry Lawlor, has stated in a High Court affidavit.
The court was told the latest assessment of the total amount that has been misappropriated from Bóthar is €769,000, up from the €465,000 the court was told about two weeks ago.
Investigations into the scandal are ongoing.
It’s all news that Pat McCarrick says has deeply saddened him, as he told Ocean FM News:
Bothar was a charity that sent the very practical gift of livestock, usually heifers, to poor communities in developing countries.
Because of this, it appealed to Irish people, particularly those in farming communities.
Although Mr McCarrick believes Bothar was ‘a great concept,’ he does not think the charity can recover.
As to what he would like to see happen now, Mr McCarrick had this to say: