May 2004 Archives

On 19th May the Minister of Finance moved an amendment to the Central Bank and FSA Bill to allow a financial institution pay penalties for a transgression without admitting guilt or where it admits guilt. I assume that these payments and the underlying circumstances will not be publicised. This could allow financial institutions or management to engage in doubtful practices and then plea bargain in private if caught. Contrast this approach with the naming and shaming of tax defaulters.

Could this amendment mean that  the emerging scandals at AIB would have never become public? If so then the Minister must urgently review his proposals to provide full transparency and disclosure. Consumers should not be treated like mushrooms (kept in the dark and covered in fertilizer) or be dependant on whistle blowers for such information.

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