Would a Fianna Fail Bluffer, Ever tell a Lie, Simple Answer, as soon as O Brien moves his Lips, he is telling Porkies???

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Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien to face claim of ‘lying’

 16th September 2021


Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien is set to be hauled before the Dáil after claims he ‘misled’ the House over the Government’s shared equity scheme.a man wearing a suit and tie© Provided by Extra.ie

It comes as it was revealed that the controversial scheme – which would see the State paying up to 30% of the purchase price of a newly built home – touted by Mr O’Brien as one of the solutions to the housing crisis, has yet to be approved by the Central Bank.

As the Dáil returned from its summer recess on Wednesday, the Housing Minister faced scathing criticism from the Opposition as they accused him of previously creating the impression the scheme had been given the green light.a man wearing a suit and tie: Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien is set to be hauled before the Dáil after claims he ‘misled’ the House over the Government’s shared equity scheme. Pic: Gareth Chaney/Collins Photos© Provided by Extra.ie Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien is set to be hauled before the Dáil after claims he ‘misled’ the House over the Government’s shared equity scheme. Pic: Gareth Chaney/Collins Photos

The Oireachtas Business Committee will meet on Thursday to discuss whether Mr O’Brien should be brought before the House to answer questions about the shared equity scheme.

Cian O’Callaghan, housing spokesman for the Social Democrats, said that the Dáil had been told ‘unequivocally and clearly’ by the minister that the scheme had been approved by the Central Bank when that wasn’t the case.

‘We now have confirmation that this is not the case. We know the Central Bank and the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) have both criticised that scheme indicating it would potentially push up house prices, ’ Mr O’Callaghan said.a man wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: As the Dáil returned from its summer recess on Wednesday, the Housing Minister faced scathing criticism from the Opposition as they accused him of previously creating the impression the scheme had been given the green light. Pic: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie© Provided by Extra.ie 

As the Dáil returned from its summer recess on Wednesday, the Housing Minister faced scathing criticism from the Opposition as they accused him of previously creating the impression the scheme had been given the green light. Pic: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

‘The statement he issued on this today does not clarify his statements in the Dáil and why he told the Dáil that. I ask that he comes into the Dáil to answer questions on why he incorrectly misinformed the Dáil and said the scheme was approved by the Central Bank when it had not been.’

Sinn Féin’s housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin also accused the Fianna Fail TD of misleading the Dáil.

‘On 24 June last year, the minister said the shared equity scheme is focused on those who need it most, it will work. It has been passed by the Central Bank, and has received approval,’ he said.Eoin Ó Broin wearing glasses: Sinn Féin’s housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin accused the Fianna Fail TD of misleading the Dáil. Pic: Gareth Chaney/Collins Photos© Provided by Extra.ie Sinn Féin’s housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin accused the Fianna Fail TD of misleading the Dáil. Pic: Gareth Chaney/Collins Photos

‘That’s what you told us last June, but we knew that wasn’t the case because we wrote to the Central Bank who said it wasn’t the case. You did the same again on Prime Time last week. I think what the minister is trying to say is that he misspoke rather than misled the Dáil and I accept his clarification.’

Meanwhile, Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty claimed that Mr O’Brien was ‘peddling this lie’ about a ‘false scheme’ as he called for him to appear before the House.

‘It is important the minister with responsibility for housing comes before this House. It is important we get to the bottom of why the minister has misled the House about a flawed scheme, about which the senior civil servant in the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform said it was being lobbied by developers because it would line their pockets and push up house prices,’ he said.

Mr Doherty also questioned whether the Taoiseach was going to ‘turn a blind eye’, as he spoke during the Dáil Order of Business. ‘Is he actually going to lead in Government? This cannot go on,’ the Donegal TD said.Pearse Doherty wearing a suit and tie smiling and looking at the camera: Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty claimed that Mr O’Brien was ‘peddling this lie’ about a ‘false scheme’ as he called for him to appear before the House. Pic: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie© Provided by Extra.ie Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty claimed that Mr O’Brien was ‘peddling this lie’ about a ‘false scheme’ as he called for him to appear before the House. Pic: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Responding to the criticism later, Mr O’Brien said that he was clarifying with the Central Bank that the scheme was ‘designed as an equity product’ and not one with the borrower taking on extra debt.

During parliamentary questions and in recent speeches I’ve repeatedly stated that the operational details are being finalised; work on the detailed design of the proposed scheme and at an advanced stage,’ he said.

A spokesperson for the Department of Housing said on Wednesday night that the Housing Minister had ‘consistently made the point’ that the scheme was being designed so as not to be a debt to those buying a property.a man wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: A spokesperson for the Department of Housing said on Wednesday night that the Housing Minister had ‘consistently made the point’ that the scheme was being designed so as not to be a debt to those buying a property. Pic: Fran Veale© Provided by Extra.ie A spokesperson for the Department of Housing said on Wednesday night that the Housing Minister had ‘consistently made the point’ that the scheme was being designed so as not to be a debt to those buying a property. Pic: Fran Veale

They added that Mr O’Brien had ‘repeatedly stated that the operational details of the First Home shared equity scheme are currently being finalised’.

‘The department continues to engage closely with stakeholders such as the Housing Agency, the Central Bank of Ireland and pillar banks to advance the First Home shared equity scheme and it is progressing positively,’ they said.

Housing for All pledges that 300,000 new homes will be built by the State over the next decade – with more than half, 156,000, coming from the private sector.

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