Noonan questions long duration of inquiries


FINE GAEL finance spokesman Michael Noonan has questioned why investigations and prosecutions in Ireland take so long. Mr Noonan said he hoped Garda investigations were being speedily concluded and producing sufficient evidence to support prosecutions. But “Why does everything take so long in this country?” he asked.

During a Private Members’ Dáil debate on accountability and the banking crisis, Mr Noonan said the concept of “moral hazard” that was “fundamental to capitalism” seemed to be an “unknown concept in Ireland, especially in Irish banking circles. AIB have had a scandal in each decade”.

He said “Anglo Irish Bank has wiped out their shareholders, and Bank of Ireland were trading at 52 cent yesterday. But despite these disasters, 32 of the directors on whose watch the decisions were made which led to the collapse of Irish banks and building societies are still in position.”

Minister of State Dara Calleary, however, said the Government had acted “vigorously and effectively”. All investigations into Anglo Irish Bank “are at an advanced stage and are being progressed . . .”