Senator Mark Daly has described as “short-sighted and disappointing” the decision of Government Senators, including Kerry’s Senator Paul Coughlan to block the passage of an important piece of legislation which would bring about greater transparency in the operation of the National Asset Management Agency.
Senator Daly brought the legislation before the Seanad this week. The provisions of the Bill would result in the following information being required to be posted on the websites of NAMA and the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (formally Anglo Irish Bank) for a minimum of 4 weeks before accepting any offer on property:
(i) the date the loan, property or other asset being disposed of was first posted on the websites;
(ii) the address of the property;
(iii) Description of the loan, property, or other asset;
(iv) name of the person and/or company in who’s name the loan, property, or other assets, are being disposed of;
(v) the name of the selling agent;
(vi) the amount of each offer made on the loan, property, or other asset;
(vii) such further details as are deemed relevant by NAMA to ensure transparency in the selling process and to protect the interests of the taxpayer.
Speaking during the debate on the NAMA and Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Transparency Bill 2011 Senator Daly said: “At the moment there are back room deals going on which are not anything to do with the Department of Finance. I have confidence in the people in NAMA but the way this is being structured at the moment, they are not selling it in accordance with the rules laid down. There needs to be a website where everyone can see what is for sale otherwise the Irish taxpayer is continuing to lose money on a daily basis and not millions or tens of millions but hundreds of millions of euro.
After a sale has been agreed both NAMA and the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation the websites would be required post:
(i) the price at which the loan, property, or other asset was sold.
Senator Daly commented: “This legislation was designed to ensure more transparency in the way NAMA and the IBRC (formerly Anglo Irish Bank) sell loans and properties. The website launched by NAMA in July last year has been proven to be lacking in detail. I believe it is crucially important that the public have more confidence in the way the two state bodies run their operations.
Senator Daly concluded: “I am disappointed at the short-sighted approach the government has taken on this legislation. The decision to block its passage in the Seanad means there will continue to be a veil of secrecy around key businesses dealings that are extremely important for the country and I don’t believe that this is something that is supported by the public.”