Belfast Telegraph

Kenny concerned over Nama buy-backs

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has expressed concerns that developers could be buying back assets seized by the National Asset Management Agency (Nama) at knockdown prices.

Mr Kenny said he had some indications that boom-time speculators who could not repay massive loans - now tied to the taxpayer - were attempting to repurchase their properties at their current prices.

Just over a week ago, the state toxic assets agency dismissed allegations repeated by a Fianna Fail senator about the practice.

Mark Daly had claimed the taxpayer was picking up the bill, running into hundreds of thousands of euro, for the plunging loan values while those who borrowed the money regained their properties at a fraction of the original price.

Speaking at the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly in Cork, Mr Kenny signalled his intention to meet finance minister Michael Noonan about the issue.

"I have had some indications of attempts to acquire property that was taken from developers through a variety of methods," he said. "I hope that Nama are on top of that, and that where Nama have acquired assets that they don't find their way back to where they were acquired from in the first place."

Mr Kenny said he was "concerned" about the alleged attempts of Celtic Tiger developers using different strategies to take back control of their former property empires.

The Taoiseach added he was very anxious that people make offers to Nama for seized properties so they can be put on the market as soon as possible. He said this would determine a bottom on the property market.

Nama has refuted the repeated claims by Senator Daly, saying he has produced no proof of the practice when asked.

The senator has accused the agency of not being transparent in its dealings. He has called for the attorney general to appear before the Seanad on the matter and has questioned why Nama properties are not being publicly auctioned.

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.


From Belfast Telegraph