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The most senior official in Michael Noonan's department has resigned

Finance Minister Michael Noonan said that it was with “great regret” that he accepted Moran’s resignation as secretary general of the Department of Finance this morning.

John Moran (File photo)
John Moran (File photo)
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

JOHN MORAN, THE most senior official in the Department of Finance, has resigned his position today in surprise move.

Finance Minister Michael Noonan said that it was with “great regret” that he accepted Moran’s resignation as secretary general of the Department of Finance this morning.

It’s understood that Moran is to return to the private sector though he has no immediate role lined up at present.

The exact reasons for his departure are unclear but it comes following Ireland’s exit from the bailout programme last December and the restructuring of the Anglo Irish Bank promissory note arrangement last year which will, according to the government, yield significant savings to the State in the coming decades.

Officials in the Department of Finance said that the resignation was not widely known of before today. A spokesperson said that Moran felt “that his work in bringing about the recovery was done and now he felt it was time to move on.”

It is thought that Moran will remain in post for at least the next couple of months. He is said to have always considered the job at finance “a short term appointment”.

The spokesperson said: “He was very progressive. He brought new ideas with him and would have been well received.”

Moran is due to appear before the Public Accounts Committee to report on his department’s accounts for 2013 tomorrow morning. That hearing is still scheduled to go ahead.

Paying tribute to Moran today, Michael Noonan said:

Since John first joined the Department of Finance on secondment from the Central Bank he played a leading role in recapitalising the banking sector and restoring the economy at a very difficult time.

Since his appointment as Secretary General he has been involved in every significant decision taken by me throughout the bail out programme, including those decisions which saw Ireland successfully exiting the programme.

I valued his council during those very difficult times and I wish John every success in the future.

- additional reporting from Jack Horgan-Jones

Read: Department of Finance head: Debt should be written off for those who really can’t pay

Read: Opposition calls on Noonan to clarify Finance Department’s involvement with banks


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Hugh O'Connell

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