Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Public Accounts Committee

Special Report No. 94 of the Comptroller and Auditor General: National Asset Management Agency Sale of Project Eagle (Resumed)

9:00 am

Photo of Mary Lou McDonaldMary Lou McDonald (Dublin Central, Sinn Fein)
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I am asking Mr. Corrigan to delve back into his memory. At this stage, it becomes apparent there is a problem with PIMCO. The problem is around fixer's fees or success fees. Mr. Corrigan does not have to rehearse that they are normal and all that because we have heard that evidence and it is on the record. Mr. Corrigan discovered that Mr. Cushnahan was in the middle of all this and it caused concern. I am sure Mr. Corrigan shared those concerns. I have no doubt Mr. Corrigan was taken aback to hear of this turn of events. What I want to ask Mr. Corrigan about very specifically is a reference in those minutes to the date of April 2013. It is the minutes of 13 March on page 118 of the Comptroller and Auditor General's report. If one looks at it, in the course of what is recorded within the minutes, it says "The board noted that PIMCO had advised that the negotiations had commenced in April 2013". This is as the board is discussing Mr. Cushnahan and the success fees and so on. I raised this matter with Mr. Corrigan's colleague, Mr. Ellingham, who initially suggested this was a typo. He subsequently clarified for the committee that it is not a typo and that the date is correct. That date, as Mr. Corrigan will know, pre-dates the unsolicited approach to NAMA by Brown Rudnick. What I want to know is why that date of April 2013 is in there? I want to tease this out with Mr. Corrigan. This suggests to me that when the board was told about Mr. Cushnahan's involvement and that he was lined up to get a success fee, the board was also told that the genesis of this fee pre-dated any approach that was made officially to NAMA and that Frank Cushnahan was involved in discussions, negotiations and so on back as early as April 2013. Was that the discussion that was had at the board? Was it given that information?