Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005
Tom Parlon launches new career in comedy
Presumption of innocence does not universally apply in Ireland Anthony
The poor standard of Irish political journalism Anthony
RTE bias: A failure of objective journalism Anthony
Alison O’Connor and professional deceit Anthony
Public Inquiry >>
A bird's eye view of the vineyard
Iran at the center of the Eurasian riddle Mon Jun 17, 2019 23:00 | amarynth
By Pepe Escobar ? posted with permission With the dogs of war on full alert, something extraordinary happened at the 19th summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) late last
US planning ?tactical assault? on Iran in response to ?tanker attack? ? report Mon Jun 17, 2019 22:15 | The Saker
RT reports: UN sources believe that the United States is planning to carry out a ?tactical assault on Iran? in response to the attack on two oil tankers in
Turkish Artillery Struck Syrian Army Positions Near Idlib Mon Jun 17, 2019 19:05 | Scott
Syrian War Report ? June 17, 2019: Turkish Artillery Struck Syrian Army Positions Near Idlib On June 16, Turkey said on that its forces had struck positions of the
Ukraine will be coerced into making peace in Donbass Mon Jun 17, 2019 16:35 | The Saker
By Petr Akopov Translated by Ollie Richardson and Angelina Siard Source: https://vz.ru/world/2019/6/... Ukraine is important for the US only in the context of their relationship with Russia, and blocks the
The Vineyard BookShelf ? ?bookshelf_survey? Search tool now available Mon Jun 17, 2019 16:17 | admin-herb
by Herb Swanson (webmaster) Vineyard BookShelf Project In February, I proposed to Saker the creation of a ‘Vineyard Bookshelf’. Many great books are noted and linked in the comments. However
The Saker >>
A Blog About Human Rights
China?s LGBT Community Mon Apr 15, 2019 19:19 | Human Rights
Declaration of Human Rights at Sea Mon Apr 08, 2019 07:31 | Human Rights
NZ Watchdog On Limits Of Free Speech Thu Mar 28, 2019 11:44 | Human Rights
US Abortion Restrictions Violating The Human Rights Of Women Thu Mar 14, 2019 15:33 | Human Rights
Human Rights Watch Urges the Human Rights Council to Renew and Strengthen Mandate of UN Commission Tue Mar 12, 2019 21:51 | Human Rights
Human Rights in Ireland >>
For lefties too stubborn to quit
A central contradiction 12:29 Tue Jun 18, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
The all-island economy and Brexit 11:39 Tue Jun 18, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Making contradictory Brexit promises? 07:40 Tue Jun 18, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Labour?s woes, redux? 07:39 Tue Jun 18, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Dracula Fever ? East Wall History Group ? Saturday 22nd June 10:42 Mon Jun 17, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Cedar Lounge >>
Whitewash: Report On Broadband Is A Cover Up
crime and justice |
Wednesday November 28, 2018 23:30 by PBP - People Before Profit
The report into the activities of the former Minister, Denis Naughton, on rural broadband is a total whitewash.
Naughton held eighteen meetings, and five dinners with representatives of Granahan McCourt. Minutes of these meetings were not kept and there were often no civil servants present. Yet the company was a bidder for the lucrative broadband contract.
But aside from Naughton’s unusual behaviour, there is an even bigger scandal looming.
Rural broadband was originally supposed to cost some hundreds of millions. But the latest estimate puts that figure at a staggering €3 billion.
Once again privatisation means huge costs for Irish taxpayers.
Up to 1999, the telephone network was run by a state company, Telecom Eireann. But the Fianna Fail government decided to copy Margaret Thatcher and sell it off. Ever since then, disaster has piled on disaster.
Instead of providing long term investment to install broad band, a series of private owners simply asset stripped the company, which had been re-named Eircom.
By October 2010, for example, Ireland was ranked 29 out of 30 countries, ahead only of Mexico for broadband speed. Only a fifth of the population had access on that date.
Yet this disaster presented another opportunity for private companies to further blackmail the government.
One of the first companies to bid for contracts was Enet, a small company based in Michael Noonan’s Limerick constituency but backed by Granahan McCourt.
It won an original contract to bring broadband to 94 towns but after a meeting with Fine Gael Minister, Michael Noonan, this contract was extended without any tender being issued. The extension pushed up the value of Enet and then, lo and bold, the state controlled Irish Investment Fund bought a major stake in the company for approximately €150 million.
On one hand, a state decision to extend a contract increased the price that another arm of state paid for a share in a private firm. You could not make it up!
Then, mysteriously, the Irish Investment Fund bought the remaining share of Enet for an undisclosed sum.
Meanwhile in a move that is not unknown among multi-nationals who bid for state contracts, two other consortiums pulled out of a bid to install rural broadband.
That left behind David McCourt, the founder and chairman of McGranahan McCourt, the company from which the state’s Investment Fund had bought shares in Enet.
As the last bidder, McCourt has the state over a barrel – or more precisely he looked on as the state threw itself over that barrel.
And in a final twist of fate, McCourt quietly announced that the make-up of his own consortium had changed.
The main supplier of the physical infrastructure would now be a new company, Actavo owned by none other than Denis O Brien.
Actavo used to be known as Siteserv and faced considerable criticism over how it won contracts to install Irish water meters.
But here it is again, standing at the ready to take its slice of another lucrative state contract – after many mysterious moves.
Only in Ireland, as they say!
The report can be found at: https://www.dccae.gov.ie/documents/NBP_Procurement_Process_Audit_...8.pdf