Norris silenced after revealing names of bondholders
Published 05/12/2010 | 05:00
PRESIDENTIAL hopeful Senator David Norris says he knows exactly who Ireland's all-powerful bondholders are, and he wants the ordinary people to know too.
Using parliamentary privilege, Mr Norris managed to name five of the international financial institutions he says the Irish taxpayer will be forced to repay as a consequence of the Government's highly-controversial EU/IMF bailout deal.
Addressing the Seanad, the independent senator read the names of Aberdeen Asset Management (London Ltd), AGICAM, Aktia Asset Management, Aletti Gestielle SGR and Alliance Bernstein (UK) Ltd, on to the record before being ruled out of order by Cathaoirleach Pat Moylan.
The five institutions are included on a list 80 international firms drawn from countries including Germany, France, Italy and the UK, which, Mr Norris says, are the bondholders of the State-owned Anglo Irish Bank.
All of Anglo's senior debt will have to be repaid by the taxpayer as a result of its inclusion by the Government in the bank guarantee scheme.
A copy of the list has since been forwarded to all members of the Dail and Seanad, and is now being circulated on the internet.
The outspoken politician stressed that he had checked the names on the list with a number of sources before referring to them in the Seanad.
He said was satisfied that the document was authentic.
The Cathaoirleach refused to allow it on the grounds that it wasn't of national importance.
"Now that is so absurd that it underlines the irrelevance of the Oireachtas; that business is being done over our heads by people who are not well disposed towards Ireland. It is absolutely disgraceful in my opinion," Mr Norris said.
"What I was doing in trying to put the list out is to show that they are German, French, Italian and British banks. So naturally they [the EU and IMF] are going to lend us money, so we can pay them. They're going to screw us by extracting the money from the people."
Mr Norris was scathing in his remarks on the €85bn deal the Government struck last week with the EU and IMF.
On this, he said: "These people in the ECB and in Europe know it's wrong. Angela Merkel knows it's wrong. But they're only going to change the rules when they have screwed us.
"Nobody else will get screwed because nobody else will put up with it. My view always was: 'You want to put it up to us? We'll pull the plug. We'll bring the whole bloody thing [the EU] down, unless you give us this money to pay yourselves at zero interest or one per cent.' Six per cent is ridiculous. I mean, not only are they treating us like a money-laundering outfit for people who at the very least are stupid and greedy, ordinary Irish people, who haven't done anything wrong, will have to pay for it."