Allegations on Nama sale: Credibility stretched

NEARLY every parish in Ireland has a version of Independent TD Mick Wallace’s startling Dáil revelations about the sale in 2014 to Cerberus Capital Management of Nama’s Northern Ireland loan book. 

Allegations on Nama sale: Credibility stretched

Those allegations involve a very different cast of actors at each telling and, no matter how widely circulated, no matter how many mothers’ graves are sworn on, it does not mean that they are true.

However, in a society like this, even one where we may be too quick to believe the worst, the old theory — there’s no smoke without fire — will probably prevail. History suggests we would be very foolish to dismiss allegations of corruption.

In the Dáil last Thursday, Mr Wallace said an audit of Tughans law firm in Belfast found nearly €10m in an Isle of Man account that was “reportedly earmarked for a Northern Ireland politician or political party”.

Yesterday, Mr Wallace said he was trying to confirm more information he had, before releasing it. He also said he believed the PSNI had most of the information he had and that he expected that Michael Noonan had been kept well informed too.

It was inevitable that Nama, once responsible for one of the biggest property portfolios in the world, would become ensnared in stories such as this, especially as it was granted spectacular autonomy and discretion.

Once again the credibility of our public affairs is suffering because we think transparency is no more than a civics class ideal.

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