Central Bank to release material supporting credit union takeover

The Central Bank has secured orders permitting the public release of some but not all of the material used to support its application leading to Newbridge credit union being subsumed into Permanent TSB for some €54m.

Any material which would disclose the private affairs of individual members of the credit union will not be disclosed.

The President of the High Court, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, made the publication orders yesterday on the application of Brian Kennedy, for the Central Bank, and on consent of the directors of the credit union on condition their affidavits, which are strongly critical of the bank’s intervention, are also made public.

Ben Donnelly, chairman of the board of directors, said in one of the affidavits that it was “most regrettable” that the “ill-conceived intervention” had, “after two years and great cost to the members, resulted in the loss of credit union services to Newbridge, the loss of its landmark building, a loss of confidence in the wider credit union sector, and a cost to the taxpayers that amounts to multiples of the regulatory deficit created by the imposition of increased provisions”.

The material to be made available relates to the bank’s application more than two years ago to have a special manager appointed to the credit union, ultimately leading to the decision last month to subsume it into Permanent TSB.

Mr Kennedy said material would be made available on the bank’s website.

The court previously heard there was substantial material involved.

Bernard Dunleavy, for the directors, said their consent to publication was being given on the basis that all sworn documents of the board would also be made public.

On the application of the Central Bank at a late-night High Court sitting on Sunday, Nov 10, Newbridge credit union was transferred to Permanent TSB for some €54m.

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