EXCLUSIVE: Former Anglo chief David Drumm apologizes, says inquiry needed on bank guarantee
Tells IrishCentral he wants similar tapes from all Irish banks released
The selected excerpts from tapes beg more questions than they answer. They promote and suggest an incorrect interpretation about how and why the government issued a blanket guarantee in September 2008.
As this is at the very root of the current economic problems in Ireland it is not credible that these tapes somehow explain, or part explain, the government’s reasoning for issuing the guarantee.
One has nothing to do with the other. And yet the tapes are being represented by sections of the Irish media as 'proof' that some form of misrepresentation took place on behalf of Anglo Irish Bank.
The facts do not in any way support this. The bank guarantee was issued on the night of September 29, 2008, following a meeting between the government, its officials and the chief executives and chairmen of Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Bank who were present on the night.
So Anglo was not present?
Anglo Irish Bank was not represented and was unaware of the meeting in Government Buildings and found out about the guarantee the following morning at the same time the public was made aware through media reports. This has never been fully explained to the Irish public.
At no time did Anglo Irish Bank request the Central Bank or the Financial Regulator to ask the government to issue a blanket bank guarantee of all Irish banks' liabilities. Anglo's request was for a secured (on its loan book) loan facility of e7bn.
Anglo first became aware of the decision to issue the guarantee at the same time it was announced by the government. The bank was elated with the news because it was believed that the bank had been saved.
However, many in the bank were stunned that the government would take what some described at the time as the 'nuclear option' of guaranteeing all of the banks' liabilities instead of just protecting depositors. In order to survive the crisis, the bank would have been very grateful if they had protected depositors' money and provided the bank (and the other banks) with liquidity support to get the bank through the crisis.
So you believe the government and other banks present have much more to answer for on the guarantee than Anglo?
The public has never been told exactly what happened on the night of September 28, 2008. The government's decision to issue the guarantee covering all liabilities and not just depositors, is the root cause of the liabilities that have been placed upon the shoulders of Irish taxpayers, by a decision of the government in secret caucus.
Neither I nor my colleagues nor anyone in the bank were aware of the decision until it became public yet it has been portrayed in the public domain as something promoted by, driven by or demanded by Anglo Irish Bank. This is simply untrue and the facts support this position.
Questions have not been asked as to who benefited from the blanket guarantee, since it was most certainly not in the best interests of the State, and what advice the government received on the night and from whom that advice came. Again I would welcome this disclosure to finally put an end to the accepted untruth that Anglo Irish Bank sought a guarantee.
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