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Galway GAA sponsors Supermacs say complaints from 'parents and mentors' prompted statement

The fast food chain wants to know how sponsorship money has been spent by the Galway county board.

Supermacs have been involved with Galway GAA since 1991.
Supermacs have been involved with Galway GAA since 1991.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

GALWAY GAA SPONSORS Supermacs said they want to clarify the reasons for releasing a statement demanding how sponsorship money was being spent by the county.

The fast food chain released an initial statement on 1 October explaining how they had invested €1.6 million into Galway GAA in sponsorship funding since 2015, wanting to know how this money was being used.

In a second statement — released this evening — Supermacs said that complaints from parents, mentors and managements teams in Galway promoted them to act.

They are seeking the publication of two financial reviews into spending by the county board over recent years.

Tonight’s statement reads:

  1. Supermac’s fundamentally believes that in order for the Galway teams to be successful, there needs to be transparency at all levels. Supermac’s sole objective is to assist the Galway teams to achieve success on the field. Parents, mentors and management teams have approached Supermac’s on numerous occasions to bring several incidents that have taken place to our attention including revelations of underage teams having to bring their own lunches to tournaments in other counties, teams competing while wearing mismatched jerseys against fully kitted opposition and management teams requiring further resources that weren’t being made available to them due to budget cuts.
  2. Supermac’s has no interest in seeking to influence the decision-making process of the Galway GAA but while a cloud hangs over the organisation it has an effect on the competitiveness and success of our teams. Supermac’s acknowledges that a lot of honourable people contribute at all levels of the GAA and whilst there are the beginnings of a necessary change in culture, the path forward cannot be laid until the issues of the past are revealed. Supermac’s seeks the transparency and accountability which are vital to confidence going forward. The first steps in this journey require that the two concluded reports into the finances of Galway GAA be published in full or otherwise further investigated by the relevant authorities. Supermac’s is at a loss to understand why these reports have not been published. We re-iterate that players, management, supporters and volunteers who willingly give their time for the promotion and administration of our games, deserve no less.
  3. As previously stated, our concerns in relation to financial matters in Galway GAA were brought to the attention of the Galway County Board 4 years ago and, shortly afterwards, to the attention of Croke Park and nothing happened. We raised these concerns again at a meeting with the County Board in January of this year following the findings of the Mazars Report.
  4. In the interest of clarification, Supermac’s has separate sponsorship arrangements with the Galway Camogie Board and the Galway Ladies Football Board. The figures released in Supermac’s statement last week were not inclusive of these other sponsorships.

Supermascs are long-time sponsors of Galway GAA and have been involved with the county since 1991.

Tonight’s statement comes during a difficult week for the 2017 All-Ireland hurling champions, who saw Michael Donohue step down from his position as manager at the end of August.

All three candidates for the vacant hurling manager role have withdrawn from the race to replace Donoghue.

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Noel Larkin and Francis Forde have followed former U21 and camogie manager Tony Ward in removing their names from the process.

Larkin and Forde worked as selectors under outgoing boss Donoghue for all four years of his reign.

Their decision to drop out of the running leaves Galway chiefs in a predicament.

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About the author:

Aaron Gallagher

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