Bank inquiry steps up security due to "confidential nature" of information

Inquiry chair and Labour TD Ciaran Lynch

Dáil officials are set to ramp up security surrounding the ongoing banking inquiry due to the sensitive and “confidential” nature of the documents it is examining.

From next month, anyone working at the committee’s support centre will be faced with security cameras, stringent garda checks, security sweeps, and “robust” data management controls. The measures are being put in place as part of its legally binding nexus stage, which will begin on April 22.

Unlike the first context stage, this second stage will compel witnesses to attend and explain in detail their decisions during the economic boom and bust. Witnesses will include a series of high-level bankers, financial experts, and politicians, all of whom will be under legal orders to provide all information at their disposal.

“Given the confidential nature of some of the information being supplied to the inquiry for the nexus phase hearings, a number of security measures have been put in place at the inquiry support centre,” said inquiry chair and Labour TD Ciaran Lynch. “This high level of security reflects the sensitive material that is required by the committee to carry out its duties.”

The first people to attend nexus-stage hearings will be Nama chairman Frank Daly and chief executive Brendan McDonagh on April 22. They will be followed by AIB officials Michael Buckley, Dermot Gleeson, and Donal Forde on April 23 and 29; Bank of Ireland’s Brian Goggin, Richard Burrows, and Laurence Crowley on April 30, May 6, and May 14; and Ulster Bank’s Michael Torpey on May 7.

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