Belfast Telegraph

Taoiseach defends appointment of incoming governor of Central Bank

Gabriel Makhlouf will take the reins of the lender in September.

The logo at the Central Bank of Ireland (Niall Carson/PA)
The logo at the Central Bank of Ireland (Niall Carson/PA)

The Taoiseach has defended the appointment of Gabriel Makhlouf as governor of the Central Bank.

Mr Makhlouf has come under criticism for failures surrounding a breach of security, including a leak of sensitive budget information in New Zealand, where he served as treasury secretary.

An investigation into Mr Makhlouf’s handling of the budget breach found, although Mr Makhlouf’s actions fell well short of what was expected, they did not warrant dismissal.

Mr Makhlouf apologised over the incident, but noted the report stated he had acted in good faith and with political neutrality.

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Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (Niall Carson/PA)

He is due to take up the role of head of the Central Bank of Ireland in September.

“I think it’s important to bear in mind the means by which Gabriel Makhlouf got appointed as the new governor of the central bank,” Leo Varadkar said on Friday.

“There was in international competition, there was a set of interviews and he was the sole candidate put forward to cabinet, at that point we made his appointment and we’ve no plans to revoke his appointment.

“The report we have seen from New Zealand says that he acted in good faith, didn’t act in a political way at all but it was critical of him in some aspects, how he handled that affair.

“And I’m sure he will want to make a statement on that before he takes up office.”

PA

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