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'Bad bank' will rely on wealth of experience


Frank Daly Chairman of NAMA which will be based at the Treasury Building in Dublin.

Frank Daly Chairman of NAMA which will be based at the Treasury Building in Dublin.

Frank Daly Chairman of NAMA which will be based at the Treasury Building in Dublin.

FRANK DALY, the newly appointed chairman of the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA), is an experienced public servant with a long history of well-paid service to the State.

Mr Daly, of Abbeyside, Co Waterford, joined the Revenue Commissioners from school and rose to chairman of the tax authority in 2002 when Finance Minister Charlie McCreevy gave him the top post.

He served for six years and introduced a crack-down on tax cheats as well as some reform of the Revenue Commissioners which have since been praised by the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.

He was previously chief inspector of taxes and responsible for direct tax policy and international affairs.

Since leaving the Revenue Commissioners, Mr Daly has been given a succession of jobs by the Government, such as chairing the Commission on Taxation. He heads a panel assessing the resources of religious congregations in the light of the Ryan report and was appointed to the board of Anglo Irish Bank along with Alan Dukes earlier this year.

Mr Daly was paid €120,000 for chairing the Commission on Taxation -- earning €1,000 for each half day or more, or €500 where a commitment of less than half a day was required -- and receives fees for sitting on the board of Anglo. His salary for filling the part-time post as chairman of NAMA has not yet been revealed.

Mr Daly will be joined on the board by Eilish Finan, a former KPMG accountant and Trinity College Dublin-educated electronic engineer who was proposed by the Green Party despite not being a member. A former chief financial officer of AIG Global Investments, she was involved in investments on behalf of the faltering insurance behemoth including Italy's biggest shopping centre in Brescia, outside of Milan. Ms Finan's unit within AIG was called AIG Global Real Estate Investment Corp and had a niche focus in green building design and implementation.


Another member is Michael Connolly, who is a former board member of Bank of Ireland and now sits on the Financial Services Ombudsman Council as well as advising ACC Bank, Anglo Irish Bank and Bank of Ireland. Mr Connolly left his job as head of business banking in Bank of Ireland nine years ago after the bank abolished its separate business centres to bring decisions back to branch managers.

The third accountant to join the board is Peter Stewart who was proposed by the Labour Party and is managing director of Dublin firm O'Donovan Stewart. Mr Stewart was hired by rogue solicitor Michael Lynn to draw up a list of the solicitor's assets and liabilities when the Law Society launched a probe into his legal practice. He previously set up the economics and financial consultancy group Tansey Webster Stewart along with the late Paul Tansey, economics editor of the 'Irish Times', and business consultant Stuart Webster.

Limerick accountant Brian McEnery was proposed by Fine Gael. The insolvency expert is no stranger to public life and has previously served as a board member of semi-state bodies as well as president of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. Mr McEnery told the Irish Independent over the summer that no previous recession had produced such a huge overlap between personal insolvency and corporate insolvency.

Willie Soffe served alongside Mr Daly on the Commission on Taxation and is a former county manager of Fingal County Council. He clashed with Charlie McCreevy back in 2004 when the former finance minister delayed pay increases for senior civil servants and judges for three years. He was also the chairman of the Dublin Transportation Office.

The last name revealed yesterday, and the only foreigner, was US citizen Steven Seelig who is currently serving as the International Monetary Fund's expert on the Irish, German and Estonian economies.

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