THE Government has given the go-ahead for the long-awaited banking inquiry at its cabinet meeting today.
It will focus on the three key areas – the 2008 state banking guarantee, the role of auditors and the role of State institutions.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny told the Dail that the necessary legislation had been signed into law and the view of the Government was that the first inquiry to be undertaken should be the banking inquiry.
He said the Government would ensure that the banking inquiry was adequately resourced and will have full co-operation of all State instituions.
The banking inquiry is expected to be up-and-running early next year. Mr Kenny signalled that the Government would allow State agencies to help the inquiry in any way possible.
“The state will make available to the committee the resources and facilities of Government departments and agencies to help them with their inquiries.”
Mr Kenny referred to the fact that criminal trials related to the banking collapse will also be taking at the same time.
He said it was his earnest hope that TDs would use their important powers and solemn responsibilities “prudently and exercised judiciously” while carrying out the banking inquiry.
And he said it was up to them to determine without fear or favour all of the true material facts into the collapse of banking sector “which continues to cause profound suffering and loss and hardship to the Irish people”.
It will be up to the Dail to decide whether to allow an existing committee such as the Finance Committee or the Public Accounts committee to carry out the inquiry. Or the Dail could decide to set up a dedicated committee.
Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor