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Watch: Ahern believes he could have played 'key role' during downturn

The former Taoiseach says he would have been far happier dealing with the crisis then “out twiddling me thumbs”.

Image: Screengrab via YouTube.

BERTIE AHERN BELIEVES that his experience would have allowed him to play a “key role” during the financial crisis that occurred after he stepped down as Taoiseach.

In an interview with Mike Murphy to be broadcast on RTÉ One tonight, Ahern says his experience as a former Minister for Finance would have been beneficial as Ireland went through an economic downturn that would eventually lead to an international bailout.

“I would have been far happier in there, hands on in that crisis than out twiddling me thumbs,” he tells Murphy while insisting that no economist had warned his government the capitalisation of the banks needed to be investigated.


Ahern also answers questions relating to the revelations from the Mahon Tribunal in 2007 regarding his personal finances which are widely thought to have hastened his departure from office in May 2008.

During the tribunal details of “dig-outs” he received from friends came to light. Ahern tells Murphy he has since paid all the money back to the people he owed or, in cases where they didn’t accept it, to charity.


In the wide-ranging interview, Ahern also talks about the success of the Good Friday agreement in 1998 and how that was tempered by the death of his mother, saying it was a “huge regret” that he did not get to see his mother before she passed.


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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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