Finance Department does not have records on Siteserv until after sale

PAC questions officials on sale of company to Denis O’Brien’s Millington

Waterford Fine Gael TD John Deasy was told the Department of Finance did not contact the stock exchange or the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement about  increased share activity.

Waterford Fine Gael TD John Deasy was told the Department of Finance did not contact the stock exchange or the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement about increased share activity.

 

The Department of Finance does not have any records on Siteserv until after its sale by the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation to businessman Denis O’Brien, the Public Accounts Committee has heard.

Department officials, including Secretary General Derek Moran, this week answered questions from TDs on the sale of the company to Mr O’Brien.

Mr Moran said the department did not have any records or details relating to Siteserv until April 2012, a month after the sale of the company to Mr O’Brien’s Millington for €45.4 million.

He said department officials first became aware of possible concerns because of correspondence from a member of the public and media reports.

Share activity

WaterfordFine GaelJohn DeasyAnn Nolan

Mr Deasy was told the department did not contact the stock exchange or the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement about the increased share activity.

He said the public would be amazed when they heard the department did not contact either organisation or the Garda.

“The public are going to find it amazing that the department did not make the most basic of inquiries,” Mr Deasy said. “If you are not going to lift up the phone, we are going to have to do it ourselves.”

Fianna Fáil’s Seán Fleming asked Ms Nolan whether the department had an estimate for the cost of the review into all IBRC transactions that led to losses of €10 million or more to the taxpayer.

Flawed process

KPMG

On the relationship between the Department of Finance and IBRC, Mr Moran said there was “exasperation on a number of issues” within the department.

Ms Nolan said there was a culture within IBRC “that never really recognised the damage they had done to the country and that their independence meant they should not be answerable, even though they had taken a lot of money from us”.

“That would be our view. You would have to ask them,” she added.