Editorial: Crisis will be Ahern's real legacy

Bertie Ahern's political legacy will be sharply divided. His outstanding achievement was the peace process and the restoration of normality in Northern Ireland. This was the pinnacle of a long political career, which included three stints as Taoiseach.

Unfortunately, the achievement will be completely eclipsed by his economic stewardship as the country crashed in economic crisis.

The former Taoiseach was quick to bask in the glory of the boom times but reluctant to accept responsibility when it all went wrong.

His inability to answer questions about how he could have tens of thousands of pounds in a safe and be the leader of a country without a personal bank account tested his public credibility.

It must be galling for a man who survived so long in politics and who achieved such sterling work in Northern Ireland that his memory will be for ever tarnished by the reasons for his fall from grace.