Giving testimony at his Tipperary home yesterday, former minister for Transport, Energy and Communications Michael Lowry apologised to his teenage son for "instances during the course of the past few years when I may have forgotten to give you your pocket money".
He said he did not know how the process of awarding pocket money had become neglected on these occasions. He added that he had no knowledge of how a £10 pound payment due for Jan 14th last came to go astray as the pocket money awarding process was handled by professional consultants.
Mr Lowry told his son that pocket money payments were made in the form of a personal donation and as such he was under no obligation to reimburse him for payments missed in the past. These payments could by now total anything up to £50. The missed payment in question was supposed to occur when the Lowrys were on a fishing trip on Achill. Mr Lowry said he believed that as the family was on holiday he was no longer required to provide pocket money for his children during that period.
Cross-examining, his son asked if he felt it was appropriate that Mr Lowry interfere in the pocket money process in that way. Mr Lowry responded that he thought it was, to which his son replied by asking how "in this day and age" he was supposed to make do with "a scabby" £10 a week. In a characteristically measured reply Mr Lowry told his son to go to his room and stay there "until you've learned your lesson". He also withdrew his son's anonymous mobile phone privileges, which he reminded the boy, didn't come cheap.
The grounding continues.