Fianna Fáil Spokesperson for Public Expenditure and Reform Seán Fleming TD has described as inexplicable the continued failure by the Government to publish the reports by Ernst & Young and McCann Fitzgerald into the manner in which the former Irish Nationwide Building Society was run.
Deputy Fleming was commenting on a parliamentary reply in which the Minister for Finance claimed that the reports are “confidential and it would not be appropriate for (the IBRC special liquidators) to release such information.”
“The grossly irresponsible and highly irregular manner in which the business of Irish Nationwide was conducted cost Irish taxpayers €5.4 billion and yet no one has been held accountable for the practices that were allowed to persist there,” said Deputy Fleming.
“In July of this year a settlement agreement was reached between the Central Bank of Ireland and Irish Nationwide Building Society. That investigation commenced in 2010 and focussed on INBS’s commercial lending and credit risk management processes. Following the Central Bank Investigation INBS admitted widespread breaches and the Central Bank imposed the maximum applicable fine of €5 million.
“Most people were left scratching their head by this outcome as INBS has no assets with which to pay the fines and no individual has been subject to any financial sanction to date.
“In opposition, senior Labour party figures called for the publication of the reports but have gone strangely silent on the matter since. There is no justification for the continued failure to publish the report. The special liquidator is citing confidentiality seven years on from the collapse of Irish Nationwide. The public’s right to know should take precedence.
“It is my view that it should be possible for the government to publish the two corporate governance reports in a manner consistent with the public interest and without prejudice to any future legal actions which may take place.”