Friday 23 March 2018

Central Bank issues statement on whistleblower allegations

The Central Bank headquarters in Dublin
The Central Bank headquarters in Dublin
Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

The Central Bank has said that it is committed to developing an environment where whistle-blowers will be protected upon raising concerns.

Ireland’s financial regulator issued a statement following allegations that a former auditor was asked to delete critical findings from an internal report into the Central Bank itself in October of last year.

The issue was brought the fore by Sinn Féin deputy leader, Mary Lou McDonald, who put it to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) yesterday.

In the statement the Central Bank says that employees should not fear their future employment if they are rising concerns with reasonable belief of wrongdoing.

“The Central Bank expects the highest standards of corporate governance in the firms it regulates and also applies those high standards to itself.  We are committed to identify areas where improvements can be made that will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our operations.

“The Central Bank is committed to the principle of public accountability and to developing a culture where it is safe and acceptable for all its employees to raise their concerns about what is happening at work if they have a reasonable belief of wrongdoing.

“Employees have an important role in identifying and reporting concerns about wrongdoing which has come to their attention in connection with their employment. The Central Bank investigates all concerns raised by its staff through the Central Bank’s Confidential Disclosure Policy relating to perceived wrongdoing in the Central Bank and ensures that employees are not discriminated against or suffer detriment as a result of raising a concern.”

The former Central Bank auditor says that he was unfairly dismissed as a result of him bringing his claims forward. However, the Central Bank argues that his contract had come to a natural end and that it chose not to renew it.

The case between the auditor and the Central Bank is currently ongoing in the Labour Relations Committee.

The Comptroller and Auditor General, Seamus McCarthy, said yesterday that he would investigate the claims made by the whistleblower.

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