Friday 9 December 2016

Noonan rules out sworn Nama inquiry

Published 17/07/2015 | 02:30

Mick Wallace arrives at Leinster House yesterday
Mick Wallace arrives at Leinster House yesterday

Finance Minister Michael Noonan has ruled out any commission of investigation into allegations made by Independent TD Mick Wallace about Nama.

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Mr Noonan said he believed Nama was already subject to a high level of public accountability compared to other commercial State sector bodies.

"I do not believe further measures are required at this time," he said in response to a parliamentary question tabled by Mr Wallace.

The Wexford TD said yesterday he would co-operate with gardaí who are investigating allegations he made in the Dáil that a Nama portfolio manager sought and received two €15,000 bribes.

However, he is refusing to attend either a public or private meeting of the Dáil Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to answer further questions about his claims.

Concerns

Earlier this week Taoiseach Enda Kenny urged Mr Wallace to go to the PAC with his concerns. PAC chairman John McGuinness subsequently wrote to Mr Wallace and approached him directly.

Mr McGuinness said it was irresponsible for Mr Wallace to make the allegations and then refuse to cooperate with the Dáil committee which has oversight of Nama.

But Mr Wallace insisted yesterday the PAC was not equipped to deal with the matters he had raised and that a sworn commission of investigation was required.

The garda probe was launched after Nama chief executive Brendan McDonagh wrote to Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan requesting an inquiry into Mr Wallace's allegations. He said Mr Wallace may be in breach of the Criminal Justice Act, which requires anyone with evidence of a crime to bring it to the attention of gardaí.

Mr Wallace said yesterday he would bring what information he had to the gardaí.

Irish Independent

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