Varadkar calls on former bank execs to give back some of pension

Two senior cabinet ministers are calling on former senior executives at the country's banks to give back some of their pensions.

Varadkar calls on former bank execs to give back some of pension

Two senior cabinet ministers are calling on former senior executives at the country's banks to give back some of their pensions.

Earlier this week, the former head of AIB Eugene Sheehy took a pension cut of up to €75,000 following pressure from the bailed out bank and the Taoiseach.

Enda Kenny told the Dáil that AIB's former managers had a ''moral responsibility'' to reduce their pensions over the failure of the bank.

This morning, the Education Minister Ruairi Quinn said more bankers should follow Mr Sheehy's lead.

And the Transport Minister Leo Varadkar agrees: “Unfortunately there are examples from the top to the bottom in Ireland of people who are getting pensions they never really paid for.

“It needs to be addressed, it is easy with new entrants but it’s hard to change where contracts already exist.

“Certainly, people who are receiving large pensions and helped to contribute to the demise of the banking centre should give some of that up.”

Meanwhile, an independent TD is calling for a referendum on bankers’ pay and pensions.

Shane Ross says it could be useful to put the pressure on those enjoying top level packages to give some of them up.

The Dublin South Deputy says it could be worthwhile, even though legally-binding contracts can't be broken: “Retrospectively, you might not be able to do anything at all because they are actually set in law but let’s see if you hold a referendum and see if the bankers go out and campaign against it.

“That would put enormous pressure on them to sacrifice and do what Eugene Sheehy has done but an enormous amount more.”

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