The Department of Finance has released documents related to the Wright Panel. The Panel was established by Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan on 10 September, 2010, to examine the Department of Finance’s performance over the previous ten years and advise how the Department “might adapt to meet the challenges of the future”.
Tom Lyons, the deputy business editor of the Sunday Independent obtained the documents after a two year appeals process with the Information Commissioner, after Finance refused access citing Section 26 and 21 of the FOI Act. The Commissioner found in favour of release.
Of the more notable things in the documents is former Central Bank chief John Hurley referring to the decision by officials to guarantee the banks as ‘heroic’:
And as Tom Lyons notes:
Despite long interviews with Brian Lenihan, the former Minister for Finance, and Brian Cowen, the former Taoiseach, the department said it had no records of what they thought. The department also claimed it had no record of what Kevin Cardiff, its then secretary general who was in charge of banking during the boom, thought.
Here is the release in full:
This is the decision of the Information Commissioner: