Fianna Fáil Finance Spokesperson Michael McGrath has said the Government’s decision to extend the Eligible Liabilities Guarantee for banks highlights yet again the utter hypocrisy of Fine Gael and Labour in Government.
Deputy McGrath stated, “The Minister for Finance Michael Noonan’s announcement that the Government has decided to extend Eligible Liabilities Guarantee (ELG) for twelve months to 31 December 2012 is a classic example of Fine Gael and Labour saying one thing in opposition and doing a different thing in Government.
“Fine Gael and Labour have consistently riled against the original bank guarantee of 2008 – even though Fine Gael voted for it and Michael Noonan has said recently Labour’s proposal to nationalise the banking system at the time would have been a worse option.
“When the previous Government introduced the more limited form of guarantee (the ELG) in December 2009 in order to allow banks to continue to access essential funding, the Dáil record shows that Fine Gael and Labour voted against it.
‘Today, with a simple press release, the Minister for Finance has confirmed that the ELG has been extended for a further twelve months to the end of 2012. The Minister stated ‘The continuation of the Scheme is an important support to the Irish Banking system and complements the steps that have already been taken to help restore it to a sound footing.’ This is a far cry from the rhetoric we had to listen to a few short months ago from Fine Gael and Labour about the previous Government’s support for the banking system.
“Given the ongoing Eurozone debt crisis and the turbulence in the financial markets, the decision to extend the ELG is the correct one. It is a pity, however, that we cannot have more honesty from Fine Gael and Labour when they are making decisions that are the polar opposite of what they said outside of Government.”