Courage of Martin O’Donoghue

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Courage of Martin O’Donoghue


Martin O’Donoghue
Martin O’Donoghue

Sir – The late Martin O’Donoghue (Obituaries, Sunday Independent, July 29) was a member of the Justice Kenny-led commission on the price of building land. The late Bobby Molloy (then minister for local government in a Fianna Fail government) set this up in 1971.

It was an attempt to limit the political manipulation of land values. Many see this as a major source of wealth creation, if not the only way of getting rich. We are all only too well aware of the disastrous effects of that cast of mind over decades. During the years of the Celtic craziness, this obsession was fuelled by low standards in private banks, lax regulation, poor planning and tax breaks. We are still living with the effects of these policies and practices.

In evidence to the Oireachtas Banking Inquiry (April 25, 2015), Dermot Gleeson (former AIB chairman, Attorney General in the Rainbow Coalition 1994-97, member of the Constitutional Review Group 1995-96) drew attention to the Kenny report by pointing out that “the legal intellectual spade work in relation to the price of building land has been done”.

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