Sunday 4 December 2016

There is never a wrong time to do the right thing – especially in banking probe

Published 19/06/2014 | 02:30

Former Taoiseach Brian Cowen. 'Delays mean the report will arrive in time to embarrass FF ahead of the next general election.'
Former Taoiseach Brian Cowen. 'Delays mean the report will arrive in time to embarrass FF ahead of the next general election.'

The Taoiseach is in a tailspin. The latest blunder is reminiscent of Ballymcgash Council politics from an episode of Hall's Pictorial Weekly. Any apparent necessity for the government to have a majority on the Oireachtas banking Inquiry is patent nonsense, especially now that Fine Gael and Labour members have a free hand to act and vote.

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If ever this committee does divide through a vote, its value in terms of majority and minority factions is utterly redundant. Kenny refers to "the will of the people" – rest assured after recent election results, he'll do all in his power to avoid an updated verdict of the people. This crass clumsy politicking is but the latest instalment of government mishandling and a lack of understanding of what's required in a Parliamentary banking probe.

For many this is a yawn-fest. It is not. Okay, it's three years too late. We should have had a Leveson style inquiry; chaired by a judge, assisted by a panel of six experts, with hearings in public, procuring evidence through forensic skilled questioning by a lead prosecutor.

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