Ireland: RTÉ’s financial scandal halted the hosting of an independent national final!

RTÉ, Ireland ‘s public broadcaster, initially intended to host an independent national final, but according to Michael Kealy, the country’s head of delegation, the financial scandal in which the channel got involved last year, prevented the event in question!

Michael Kealy, reports on “The Euro Trip Podcast”, that RTÉ initially intended to organize a separate national final, without having to work with “The Late Late Show”. He states that:

“Our resources hit a buffer for a lot of self-inflicted reasons from the organisation. That suddenly caused a crunch in our ability to spend money on new endeavours. It was a bit disappointing that suddenly the money wasn’t there. I had been hoping that we could look at having a standalone national selection, but once the credit crunch hit us, that really was off the table. There was a fair chance it could’ve happened this year.” 

RTÉ was involved in a scandal in June 2023 when it revealed, previously unknown financial deals between the channel and former presenter of  The Late Late Show”Ryan Tubridy.

Along with the admission of the existence of barter accounts and international trips costing more than €100,000, the headline of the scandal was the revelation that RTÉ paid €345,000 more than what had been previously disclosed to Tubridy between 2017 and 2022.

Dee Forbes, the former Director General of the broadcaster, was asked to resign by the RTÉ board. After initially refusing, she was suspended and eventually resigned days later.

Despite the revelation of the scandal, Michael Kealy remains positive that a national final can be held in 2025, without the collaboration with “The Late Late Show”.

“I’m hopeful things may settle down later this year and our finances may be put on a more stable footing and we may hopefully have the money to do something like it next year. Let’s be hopeful.”

This year’s Irish national final is scheduled to take place on January 26 , with the participation of six artists , in a special episode of “The Late Late Show”.

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for all the news regarding the Irish participation at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024, in Malmö!


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