DONEGAL TD Pearse Doherty has slammed as ‘scandalous’ the charging of interest and additional charges being levied by Irish banks on customers who take mortgage holidays during the Covid-19 pandemic.
While the five main Irish banks have all agreed to a three-month break, Doherty hit out at lenders during a Dáil sitting this afternoon.
TDs are debating emergency laws which are being fast-tracked amid the growing coronavirus crisis and Sinn Féin finance spokesman Doherty has blasted the institutions he says are attempting to profit on interest payments.
“The banks came out with great fanfare and said a moratorium or three-month break would take place,” he said in the chamber
“The reality is that these banks are going to profit on the back of the pandemic and it’s not acceptable.
“Let us consider Bank of Ireland – its website shows this clearly. Someone with a 30-year mortgage of €200,000 will pay €1,804 extra to the bank because of this three-month break.
“A vulture fund – let us name it – Pepper – is telling customers that it will give them the three-month break but it will increase the repayment from €1,500 to €1,600 each month until the amount of money the customer should have paid, including the interest, is paid off. The fund is not extending it over the full duration of the loan.
“That is how much extra the bank will take from that customer. This is not acceptable.”
Deputy Doherty called on the Government to demand that the financial institutions and the Central Bank ‘play their part’.
He said “We bailed them out over a decade ago and now they need to play their part in making sure that workers and families are supported.”
The Gaoth Dobhair-based TD said the Covid-19 is challenging Ireland in ‘an unprecedented and profound way’.
Earlier, Deputy Doherty told the Dáil: “Absolutely everything we do must prioritise the welfare and the health of our citizens. This isn’t a time for delay. It is a time for decisive actions.
“Every worker and family must be protected and support throughout this crisis, however long it lasts.
“All of us need to work together to minimise and stop these tragedies in the coming period.”
He praised the health workers and those on the front-line whose ‘courage, their selflessness and their dedication is an inspiration and a comfort to the nation.’Tags: