Fine Gael TD accuses Kenny of throwing Nama staff ‘under bus’

Outspoken critic of Taoiseach Deasy was on PAC in last Dáil inquiry into Project Eagle

  Enda Kenny with  Waterford TD John Deasy who accused the Taoiseach  of making decisions so as to keep the Government together, instead of for the good of the country. Photograph: Eric Luke

Enda Kenny with Waterford TD John Deasy who accused the Taoiseach of making decisions so as to keep the Government together, instead of for the good of the country. Photograph: Eric Luke

 

Fine Gael TD John Deasy has accused Taoiseach Enda Kenny of throwing “good public servants” in Nama “under a bus” in the controversy over the sale of the agency’s Northern Ireland loans portfolio, Project Eagle.

Mr Deasy, a Waterford TD, also accused Mr Kenny of making decisions so as to keep the Government together, instead of for the good of the country.

Mr Deasy, a long-time critic of Mr Kenny, was the vice-chairman of the Public Accounts Committee in the the last Dáil when it examined the Project Eagle controversy. He said he had pointed out at the time that it was wrong of Nama not to halt the sales process once it was alerted to alleged “success fees” in relation to the deal.

He said there should be no inquiry into Project Eagle until all criminal investigations had concluded. He added that the Cabinet had “abdicated leadership” by beginning the process of establishing an inquiry.

He said Minister for Finance Michael Noonan needed to explain why he had reversed his previous position that an inquiry was not needed.

“In my opinion, he folded to Enda Kenny, who just wants all of this to go away,” he said.

Media direction

Mr Deasy told The Irish Times: “The way the Government is being run right now is that once the media goes in a particular direction, the Taoiseach follows”.

He said the decision to set up an inquiry into Project Eagle was a “classic example”.

“The Taoiseach will kick any can down the road to avoid making unpopular decisions and if that means spending millions and throwing some good public servants under a bus to keep the Government going for a few months, that now seems to be acceptable.

“It is becoming too convenient for the Cabinet to abdicate leadership and opt for another inquiry that has a lot less to do with the substance of the issue, and more to do with keeping Fianna Fáil and the Independents happy.”