Fianna Fáil Finance Spokesperson Michael McGrath has said the protection for the 13,000 IBRC mortgage holders whose mortgages are being sold by the Special Liquidator must be binding and enforceable.
Deputy McGrath was speaking on the eve of an appearance by the IBRC Special Liquidator before the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform.
Deputy McGrath stated, “The attitude of the government on this issue so far can be characterised as dismissive and indifferent to the very serious different plight facing the IBRC mortgage holders whose mortgages are being sold from under their feet.
The bottom line is that the former Irish Nationwide mortgage holders must have their interests fully protected when the mortgage book is sold or transferred over the next few weeks.
“The notion that the government will ask the purchaser of this loan book to comply with the statutory codes is nothing short of a joke. Voluntary compliance is virtually useless as it is not binding and is utterly unenforceable if a dispute arises. The Central Bank, Department of Finance and the Special Liquidator will have no role whatsoever if an unregulated entity claims to be complying with the statutory codes but is in fact riding roughshod over the mortgage holders’ rights.
“Under no circumstances should the IBRC mortgage holders be left exposed, vulnerable and isolated. Fianna Fáil has published a Bill which make would ensure the vital statutory protections afforded to mortgage holders in Ireland – including the Code of Conduct on Mortgage Arrears and recourse to the Financial Services Ombudsman – would continue to apply if an unregulated entity purchases the IBRC mortgage book.
“The truth is this should be an issue of concern for every mortgage holder in the country. If the government gets away with selling the right of IBRC mortgage holders down the river, we should all be very concerned indeed.”