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Enda Kenny promises to help Priory Hall residents

“This is not going to sort itself out,” the Taoiseach said.

Enda Kenny speaks to former resident Stephanie Meehan at a protest last year.
Enda Kenny speaks to former resident Stephanie Meehan at a protest last year.
Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY has given his first firm commitment that the Government will help the former residents of the disastrous Priory Hall development.

One day after Environment Minister Phil Hogan suggested that the complex could be demolished, the Taoiseach said it would be a “complete injustice” to expect the former residents to pay mortgages for homes they will never live in.

“This is not going to sort itself out,” he said. However, he would not be drawn into exactly what form Government intervention may take while the case involving who is responsible for paying for temporary accommodation for residents is before the courts.

Enda Kenny said he has asked for a report on the issue and needs some time before deciding what action to take.

“Priory Hall is, in my view, an example of the worst of what happened during the so-called Celtic [sic] years, where people through no fault of their own were put into houses that were effectively deemed to be deathtraps,” he said.

But I want the people to know that just as in the same way as commentators said “you won’t do anything about the Magdalenes” or “you won’t do anything about the pyrite problem”, they said “you won’t do anything about Priory Hall”.

Well I want to assure you that we will. I just need a little more time.

The Taoiseach said it would be unfair for the residents to have to pay money for the abandoned homes.

“I think that when you consider what happened in our country over many years where banks and developers and others of various reputes were helped in so many ways, I think it would be an injustice, a complete injustice, to have these people expected to pay mortgages and interest on houses that they will never live in,” he said.

The head of AIB said yesterday that the bank will engage with the displace residents; however the bosses of Bank of Ireland were both criticised by TDs today when they refused to give clear answers on whether they plan to help the homeowners.

Explainer: What is happening with Priory Hall? >

Two years on: Pictures show Priory Hall apartments in ruin >

Read: Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank accused of having no solutions on Priory Hall >

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