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Troika turned down suggestion of meeting with Oireachtas committee - Noonan

Michael Noonan says he suggested that the Troika meet with an all-party committee, but that the inspectors rejected the idea.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

THE TEAM OF EU and IMF inspectors currently in Dublin turned down an invitation to attend an Oireachtas committee meeting with TDs and Senators from all political parties, it has been revealed.

Michael Noonan told the Dáil that the decision of the Troika not to meet with opposition political parties during this week’s inspection – which breaks with the usual procedure – was the decision of the Troika itself.

Noonan said he understood the Troika’s reluctance to meet with representatives of opposition parties was because they feared their comments could be “misrepresented” in the forthcoming referendum campaign on the Fiscal Compact.

“I suggested that a formula that might suit their concerns would be to meet the finance committee of the house, at which all parties would be represented, and to do it in public session,” Noonan told the Dáil this afternoon.

“They decided that they wouldn’t take up that option. I had no problem if they were to meet [with the opposition],” he said.

Noonan said it was always possible for opposition parties to make written submissions to the Troika on any matter, and suggested that a submission in writing could be more effective than an oral one.

“I’m sure they’ll consider those,” the minister said.

A spokesperson for the ECB had yesterday confirmed the Troika had opted not to meet with opposition politicians during this visit because of the delicate political situation ahead of the Fiscal Compact vote.

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The spokesperson said that while it was good to meet with people for talks in general, “now that the referendum issue is there and the timing is in place, it would not be the appropriate thing to do.”

Opposition parties had criticised the Troika’s move as a “retrograde step”.

Read: Troika discouraged from opposition meetings by May referendum, says ECB

Gallery: The troika are back in town

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Gavan Reilly

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