‘You Are Involved In The Cover-Up’

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Independent TD Mick Wallace

Independent TD Mick Wallace once again raised the sale of Project Eagle by Nama during Leaders’ Questions in the Dáil earlier.

And, once again, he called for a Commission of Investigation into the sale.

Mick Wallace: “If they needed any more proof of the need for a commission of inquiry into the workings of NAMA, Members got it at the meeting of the Committee of Public Accounts last Thursday. Deputy McDonald challenged NAMA about redactions in its responses to questions from the Northern Ireland inquiry and in particular, details of Frank Cushnahan’s conflict of interest declaration to the agency. NAMA’s representatives told the Deputy they could not give them to her and were not even obliged to so do. Answers will not be forthcoming without a commission of inquiry. There have been a great number of questions but there have been absolutely no answers and I still am not convinced the Government wants the answers. Members still do not know why NAMA allowed the Project Eagle process to continue despite the involvement of Tughans and Brown Rudnick, which had been involved in the Pimco deal. Members still do not understand how NAMA could possibly tolerate the idea of selling Project Arrow to Cerberus, which is under criminal investigation in America and Britain. How in God’s name can this be the case…”

Peter Mathews: “Hear, hear.”

Wallace: “…apart from the fact it makes no sense to sell Project Arrow in any event, given that 50% of it is residential and the country faces a housing crisis? It has a par value of more than €6 billion and yet NAMA looks to sell it for less than €1 billion. This simply does not make sense and the process should be stopped. If Cerberus is found guilty, what happens with Project Eagle? Will it be null and void? Will the entire process be undone? When Pimco’s potential criminal violation was found, did NAMA seek US legal advice? When NAMA found out, did it approach the Garda under section 19 of the Criminal Justice Act?

Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett: “A question please, thank you.”

Wallace: “If it did, when did NAMA so do? Did Lazard express views regarding the continued involvement of Brown Rudnick and Tughans or was it satisfied in this regard? Does the Taoiseach have a problem with the fact that Lazard, which ran the process for NAMA, also was involved with the bank that gave the money to Cerberus to buy it? Does the Taoiseach have a problem with that?”

Finian McGrath: “No problems.”

Enda Kenny: “I already have answered questions on this matter in the House, as has the Minister for Finance. The Deputy is aware two investigations are under way in this regard. He is aware of the interest from the United States. The Deputy has made or has been given information that he has brought to the House and he has gone to the Garda, on which I commend him. However, Deputy Wallace also is aware NAMA is responsible, through the Committee of Public Accounts to this House and the Oireachtas. I understand the Deputy has declined to give witness evidence to the aforementioned committee but he should do so. He has information or has been given information: somebody is supplying him with information, which is fair enough. He has used some of that in giving it to the authorities. However, he is making highly specific allegations here and I suggest he should accept an invitation from the Committee of Public Accounts to appear as a witness and give his evidence to the body through which NAMA is accountable to the Oireachtas and have justified the claims he has made or otherwise. I cannot speculate on a court hearing or hearings that are taking place in regard to Cerberus or any other company as to what the outcome of that might be.”

Later

Kenny: “I suggest to Deputy Wallace that while we can continue this kind of dialogue here on a weekly basis, he has been given or supplied with information and evidence…”

Mathews: “Which the Deputy has given to the Taoiseach.”

Kenny: “I suggest he take that information himself…as a witness before the Committee of Public Accounts…where NAMA can reply to the Deputy in the committee… That is what Deputy Wallace should do… Deputy Wallace can deal with the Chairman, Deputy McGuinness, and ascertain whether his allegations or evidence stands up…That is what Deputy Wallace should do… and the Deputy might well serve the national interest in a major way because whoever is giving him his piece of information, he should then test them as to whether they stand up.”

Clare Daly: “Is the Taoiseach going to allow Project Arrow?”

Barrett: “Deputy Wallace.”

Wallace:I have been to the Garda and to the National Crime Agency. I have come into the House and put stuff before the Taoiseach who is ignoring it. What is he going to do about it? He is the leader of this country and he is ignoring serious questions and serious problems I am raising. Why does the Taoiseach not wish to do something about it?

Barrett: “Will the Deputy put his supplementary question? Thank you.”

Wallace: “At this stage, there is a strong belief that Cerberus was earmarked to get this project hail, rain or snow; that the whole thing was fixed up in order that it would get it. NAMA is involved in that and the agency cannot distance itself. The sales process is not much better then the purchase process.

Barrett: “Sorry, please put your question, thank you.”

Mick Wallace:Are you satisfied that there was no collaboration with Cerebeus by a Nama insider, based in Dublin? Because I’m not. And you, if you want the answer, don’t bother your barney asking Nama for the answer because they’re not going to give it to you, no more than they’re not giving answers to the PAC. The PAC members themselves admitted last week that they do not have the authority or power to hold Nama to account. A Commission of Inquiry is the only way that you are going to get the answers we need. The Irish people have not been served well by Nama. It stinks to high heaven and you are involved in the cover-up because you refuse to do anything about it.”

Later

Enda Kenny: “You make the point that the Cerebus was earmarked for this project. You make the point that this was all fixed up, you make the point that somebody based here in Dublin was got at. Now, I think Deputy Wallace, these are pretty serious allegations. You make the point, ah yes, Taoiseach I’m involved in some kind of cover-up here and this is a situation that can only be resolved by a Commission of Investigation. Now, you’ve been to the guards, you’ve been to other authorities, I suggest to you now that you elaborate on the information you’ve given here and the allegation that you make in front of the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.”

Meanwhile…

Full transcript to follow.

Oireachtas.ie

20 thoughts on “‘You Are Involved In The Cover-Up’

  1. Walter-Ego

    It’s absolutely amazing that there are three separate international investigations about this and Enda refuses to even consider there is anything wrong. “Move along folks, nothing to see here”.

        1. Medium Sized C

          It isn’t.

          To be honest, this is one of those misapplied clicés that get bandied around here by muppets who can’t even figure out what they supposed to be angry about.

          Clearly “show us your proof” is not the same as “nothing to see here”.

          1. Anomanomanom

            It clearly is the same in this case, when an allegation is made and someone asks well can we see item A as that will either prove or disprove the allegations and they refuse or hamper you constantly then something is being hidden.

          2. Walter-Ego

            I usually find cliches are true, don’t you? . Will this go down the root of Catherine Murphys questions about IBRC deals for DOB? Deflect, deflect and deflect again, till they are backed into a corner, then set up a commission of enquiry full of their buddies.

    1. classter

      Wallace is making it too easy for Enda.

      He is clearly digging away at something significant here but is using it to grandstand.
      Before long, the scene of Wallace shouting miscellaneous allegations of variable provenance at Enda will be boring & it will be ignored.

        1. manolo

          yep, I thought it was far from boring. In fact, there were some serious accusations there and Enda seems to be hoping that it will just go away.

  2. Louise Hannon

    He knows dam fine things are wrong but wants it buried as there’s an election. That’s why he’s stalling. November election probably because more dirt will surface if he waits till March,

  3. ollie

    One Tender received, the remaining interested parties withdrew under dubious circumstances, 7 million lodged in an offshore account, NAMA mandated to hold on to assets until they have reached their optimum value but deciding to dump the NI portfolio in one lot.

    Yes Medium sized C, nothing to see here. By the way, it’s “cliché”, although the word “clique” would be more appropriate.

  4. Odockatee

    Enda Kenny: “I’m involved in some kind of cover-up here and this is a situation that can only be resolved by a Commission of Investigation”.

    Shocking admission but I’m glad the truth is finally out.

    Mayo for Sam

    1. sǝɯǝɯ ʇɐ pɐq

      Great to have your input too, Joke38.
      If we aren’t careful the man ‘might’ redeem himself through tireless work and commitment, and we can’t have that, can we?
      That’s not how ‘government’ works, is it?

  5. Anne

    “Are you satisfied that there was no collaboration with Cerebeus by a Nama insider, based in Dublin?

    “Be basically said we know enough people in Dublin….And we’ve done 18 deals, and 16 of them we’ve done off market. We’ve bought debt, we’ve, you know, we’ve done quiet deals with people, we’ve done deals with banks, we’ve done them in a variety of different ways.”

    Was it Kevin Nowlan who said this on that David McWilliam’s Wealth Divide documentary?

    1. Anne

      I think what he said there was in relation to deals at WK Nowlan of course.

      He worked with Nama for a period and went back to WK Nowlan.

      “Kevin Nowlan worked as managing director of his family property advisory firm WK Nowlan until 2010 when he joined Nama. The chartered surveyor transferred his 30 per cent shareholding in WK Nowlan into a trust before moving to Nama. WK Nowlan worked as one of Nama’s key consultants. During his time at Nama, Nowlan became one of the key players within the State agency, serving as busted tycoon Sean Dunne’s portfolio manager in Nama. Last February, Nowlan upped sticks and returned to WK Nowlan. More recently, he raised €365m on the stock market through Hibernian REIT — a fund set up to buy property.”

  6. Bonzor

    I look forward to the point where Wallace actually presents some evidence, instead of the fairly obvious and desperate self promotion before an election.

    1. paul m

      I look forward to the point where Kenny actually manages to string a coherent sentence together on his own that answers the question without the use of deflect and deny flash cards from his puppeteers.

      I do hope Wallace is just going through the motions of getting Kenny on the record before dropping him in it. I’d say the fact US are sniffing around Cerberus and NAMA is a head wrecker in the run up to an election. I imagine NAMA was on their ‘things we done right to exit austerity’ campaign literature list.

  7. Truth in the News

    The reality is that Noonan, Robinson, and Kenny are toast and should a General
    Election go ahead in November…..thats when the political “Choas” will be begin.
    it will be to late to blame a couple ex IRA operatives in Befast or that Sinn Fein
    were in on it…..there’s Billions involved with the Irish Tax Payer footing the bill
    and then the commissions, who got them and for what….?

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