Noonan: Sanctions against anyone who fails to cooperate with banking inquiry
FINANCE Minister Micheal Noonan has warned there will be sanctions against anybody who fails to appear before the planned banking inquiry.
Minister Noonan made his comments in Limerick today where he agreed that the former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm should co-operate, if he is part of any inquiry.
The under fire former chief of Anglo has apologised for using inappropriate language in recorded telephone conversations published by the Irish Independent.
The conversations took place in 2008, in the lead-up to the institution receiving a massive cash bailout from the Irish government.
"Obviously if there is an inquiry and he [Drumm] is a relevant person, I think like everybody else he should co-operate fully with the inquiry,” Minister Noonan said.
"There will be sanctions in the legislation that Brendan Howlin is bringing forward for persons who don't co-operate so that's an issue as well when he [Drumm] is contemplating his position," he added.
Mr Noonan also insisted today that the Minister for Expenditure and Public Reform Brendan Howlin has laid out in the "clearest possible terms" where the government is going in terms of the banking inquiry and that legislation to establish it is being drawn up.
When asked if he is now prepared to release official records of the late night meeting between bankers and Ministers that led to the bank guarantee scheme, given the public outrage over the Anglo tapes, Minister Noonan said this would have to be dealt with under the Freedom of Information process.
"Ministers don't have any role is deciding what can be released under Freedom of Information. There is a designated officer within the Department and Ministers wouldn't even know what the Freedom of Information requests are, so we won't interfere with the legal position on the releasing of documents," he said.
Minister Noonan made his comments at the Graduate Medical School in the University of Limerick today at the launch of €40m investment in the pharmaceutical sector by Government and Industry.
Richard Bruton, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and Seán Sherlock TD, Minister for Research and Innovation today announced funding, through the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, of €30m to support world-class research at the Synthesis & Solid State Pharmaceutical Centre (SSPC) based at the University of Limerick.
This exchequer funding is leveraging a further investment of €10m from industry partners, to the SSPC.
- Kathryn Hayes