Sunday 17 December 2017

TD who worked at Anglo wants to join bank probe

Arthur Spring,Labour deputy for Kerry North-Limerick West
Arthur Spring,Labour deputy for Kerry North-Limerick West

Niall O'Connor, Political Correspondent

A LABOUR TD who previously worked for Anglo Irish Bank wants to be part of the banking-collapse inquiry team.

Arthur Spring, a nephew of former Tanaiste Dick Spring, worked as a junior staff member at Anglo before being elected to the Dail.

The Kerry TD has since played a prominent role on the Oireachtas Finance Committee.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Mr Spring said he believed several TDs had been reluctant to make comments on the banking collapse in recent months so as not to "jeopardise" their chances of selection.

"Many people involved in committees have given consideration to being involved in the banking inquiry. However, several have been scared to make comments that could jeopardise their capacity for being selected," he said.

Interested TDs will have to pass a so-called 'bias test' to determine if they have made prejudicial comments about future witnesses.

One senior source last night insisted that the test would be extended to the "employment background" of TDs.

This would make it "extremely difficult" for politicians such as Mr Spring to be selected due to his former role with Anglo, the source said.

Meanwhile, the Irish Independent has learned that the Government has been pushing for a "slimmed down" inquiry team of six TDs.

Ministers are strongly opposed to an "overly bloated" team and believe six TDs will be sufficient to conduct the probe.

A set of changes to the rules of Oireachtas, required for the establishment of the inquiry, is due to be brought in front of the Dail tomorrow.

Irish Independent

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