Thursday 23 February 2017

TD raises stink over feed rations on Nama's pig farms

Maeve Sheehan

Maeve Sheehan

PIG farmers who ended up in the National Assets Management Agency (Nama) because of disastrous property investments are not being allowed the funds to feed their pigs properly, a TD has claimed.

Mattie McGrath, who represents Tipperary South, told the Dail last Thursday that pig farmers in his county who were in Nama were "not being allowed to provide proper sustenance for their animals".

The Independent TD claimed: "They are given barely enough meal to keep going. Nama wants them to sell the animals to repay some of their debts in order to make itself look good, yet it will not allow the farmers to feed proper rations to the animals to make them fit for sale.

"It is totally shoddy," he said, "because those concerned do not understand how businesses are run."

Nama has denied Mr McGrath's allegations, which he made during a debate on the Finance Bill. A spokesman said that Nama would never act in that way and does not get involved in the minutiae of management.

It is the second time in a month that Nama's knowledge of pig husbandry has been challenged by politicians.

In a similar attack earlier this month, Fine Gael TD for Cork North, Tom Barry, intervened in the case of a Cork pig farmer whose €25m loans were transferred from AIB to Nama.

Mr Barry claimed that Nama wanted to slaughter 20,000 pigs on the farm, as it was not prepared to pay for their feeding.

He claimed that agreements between AIB and Nama were not being honoured and money wasn't being released to sustain them, which could lead to their slaughter.

Nama also rejected that allegation, saying at the time that it was not directly involved in managing the farm, which was being handled on its behalf by AIB.

Mr Barry has called for a junior minister to be put in charge of Nama, which he has said was "faceless and nameless".

Sunday Independent

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