Sunday 19 November 2017

Bank Inquiry must shed light on guarantee night

"The Taoiseach of the day" Brian Cowen


The night of the Bank Guarantee, which effectively guaranteed the staggering sum of €440bn in the Irish banks, remains one of the enduring mysteries of our times.

We do know that on that fateful night, September 29, 2008, the Taoiseach of the day, Brian Cowen, the Finance Minister, Brian Lenihan, the bosses of the pillar banks and a whole swathe of senior civil servants and highly-paid financial advisers were in various locations trying to stave off a 'run' on the banks as a result of a complete loss of confidence in Ireland by the international financial community.

We also know that the agreement of the cabinet was obtained by a so-called 'incorporeal' meeting - in other words the other ministers were not present but were phoned early in the morning to approve the guarantee.

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