Nama sale of NI loan book done in proper manner, says Kenny

Micheál Martin insists position on Project Eagle becoming more and more untenable

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin: said there was €7 million in an offshore account, and there were allegations of fixers’ fees. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin: said there was €7 million in an offshore account, and there were allegations of fixers’ fees. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

 

The sale by the National Asset Management Agency (Nama) of its Northern loan book was carried out in a proper manner, Taoiseach Enda Kenny told the Dáil.

“Despite all the comments and allegations, there are no claims of wrongdoing against Nama,’’ he said. “That loan portfolio was sold following an open process to the highest bidder for what it was worth.’’

Mr Kenny said Nama had paid no money to any party against whom allegations of wrongdoing were being made.

He was replying to Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin who said the Government’s position on the sale of the loan portfolio, Project Eagle, was becoming more untenable by the day.

Mr Kenny said: “Anyone with evidence of wrongdoing needs to report it immediately to the proper authorities, as I am sure Deputy Martin will do if he has information in that regard.’’

Mr Martin said the sales process was not robust, not competitive and did not secure the best outcome. “There are huge ethical questions over the entire sale of that asset,’’ he added.

Fixers’ fees

Mr Martin said there was €7 million in an offshore account, and there were allegations of fixers’ fees. “We are talking about assets with a book value of more than €5 billion,’’ he added.

He said Nama purchased them for €2 billion and they were sold at a €400 million loss, with the Irish taxpayer losing out substantially.

Mr Martin said the UK’s National Crime Agency was investigating the matter, and there had been two arrests and rumours of more. It was also being investigated in the United States, he added.

Mr Kenny said the Department of Finance had previously made all relevant information on Project Eagle available on its website. Separately, the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General was continuing its examination of the disposal of loans by Northern Ireland debtors, he added.