Donegal Deputy Charlie McConalogue has accused the Government of making a mockery of the banking inquiry before it even starts by delaying the first committee meeting this week for purely political reasons.
The Fianna Fáil TD was referring to the Government’s decision to cancel the first meeting of the banking inquiry committee today after the Government lost a vote in the Seanad last week to get their nominee onto the committee.
“It is disgraceful that the Government has forced the cancellation of the first banking inquiry meeting today for what can only be described as political reasons.
“It means that this long-awaited inquiry is unnecessarily delayed now just because Fine Gael and Labour messed up and failed win a Seanad vote that would have ensured they controlled the banking inquiry,” said Deputy McConalogue.
He added “Fine Gael and Labour set the rules themselves. But now because of their own failure to ensure that their Senators were in the Seanad for the vote last week, they want to change the rules again. Fianna Fáil made every effort to facilitate the Government by offering to adjourn proceedings, but the Government refused. The Government nominee, Senator Susan O’Keeffe, didn’t even turn up herself and didn’t ask for a pairing. Therefore Senator Seán Barrett and Senator Marc Mac Sharry were legitimately selected for the committee.
“The Government’s appalling attempts to overturn the valid decision of the Seanad will expose their political motivations with this entire inquiry. This is supposed to be an independent inquiry focussed on getting to the truth behind the banking collapse in this country. If it is genuinely non-political, why is the Government tying itself in knots in an attempt to guarantee an in-built majority?
“The Oireachtas has chosen its representatives on the banking inquiry and the Government parties must respect this and allow the inquiry to get on with its important work,” said Deputy McConalogue.