Furious Fearghal MacLochlainn from Lifford was due to receive an official crystal presentation for his service which included four tours of duty overseas
However an official letter sent to Mr MacLochlainn, 40, has told him that he will not be allowed to take part in his retirement function because he owes €28 or “mess subs.”
Mr MacLochlainn told Donegaldaily.com he is furious that he is being threatened in such a manner.
“It is not the matter of €28. I would gladly pay that. It is the manner in which they have sent me an official letter and threatened me to pay up. It’s like I’m being blackmailed.
“If someone had have called me and mentioned it to me then I would have had no problem paying the money,” he said.
The married father-of-two, who has served in the Lebanon and Kosovo, said this is the first time he has been asked for the money.
“The €24 charge comes every six months and covers tea and coffee when you are in the mess. I have never ben asked for it and I didn’t even known about it.
“For al I knew I could have been down the country or somewhere else on duty on the day it was supposed to be paid,” he fumed.
The €28 charge for Fearghal includes the term from January to June, 2011 and another month after that.
Ferghal, who family have a proud tradition of serving the Irish army, has served in all three army bases in Co Donegal at Finner Camp, Rockhill and Lifford barracks.
He only retired last October.
The letter, which was signed by the President of the NCO’s (Non Commissioned Officer) Mess at Finner Camp, Sgt Liam Owens reads “As per NCO Rules Part 1 Paragraph 25, only fully paid-up members of the NCO’s Mess at Finner Camp will be entitled to a Retirement Presentation.”
The Lifford man, who now works as a teaching assistant, said he will not attend the retirement function as a matter of protest at how he has been treated.
“It would just sicken me to go along after how I have been treated. This is what I get after 22 years service to the Irish Army.
“I have decided what I am going to do. I am going to put this letter I got from the Irish army and put it in a frame and let my children see what their daddy got after 22 years service,” he fumed.
A spokesman for the Army Press Office has told Donegaldaily.com they are examining the complaint.Tags: