Business

Friday 28 April 2017

Former employees of Nama claim wrongdoing at State loans agency

Mick Wallace has been relentless in his pursuit of claims of wrongdoing at Nama. Photo: Tom Burke
Mick Wallace has been relentless in his pursuit of claims of wrongdoing at Nama. Photo: Tom Burke
Ronald Quinlan

Ronald Quinlan

Namaleaks, the whistleblowing website launched two weeks ago by Independent TD Mick Wallace with the aim of exposing wrongdoing at Nama, has already been contacted by a number of the State agency's former employees with claims of poor practice, the Sunday Independent can reveal.

While the anonymity of the individuals in question will be protected, the information they have presented through the website, which is being run in conjunction with the US-based Freedom of the Press Foundation, is understood to be in the early stages of being assessed by Wallace and his team to establish its veracity.

Before becoming involved with Namaleaks, the Freedom of the Press Foundation had worked closely in the past with NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

In a recent interview with the Sunday Independent, and prior to the launch of Namaleaks, Wallace said he had already been approached by up to 40 individuals - including developers, solicitors, former Nama employees and businesspeople - with serious allegations of misconduct involving Nama.

The Independent TD has been relentless in his pursuit of claims of wrongdoing at the State agency.

The most serious of those claims centres on the sale of Nama's €5.6bn Northern Ireland loan book - code-named Project Eagle - to the US private equity giant Cerberus.

All parties involved in the transaction have denied any impropriety, but the deal remains the subject of an investigation by the UK's National Crime Agency and the Securities and Exchange Commission in the United States.

Commenting in the same interview on the apparent reluctance of the Government to initiate its own commission of inquiry into the Project Eagle sale, Wallace said: "I am aware they were very content to agree to the inquiry into the IBRC without too much hassle. They seemed to be comfortable they'd be able to deal with the outcome. I think they're a little bit more wary of the outcome of the truth surrounding Nama."

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