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Press Release: Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt to visit homes of Bernard McNamara, Dermot Gleeson and other

category dublin | anti-capitalism | press release author Thursday October 28, 2010 11:25author by Gregor & Brian - 1% Network

“Brian Lenihan might claim that there is no pot of gold to be had from the wealthy. We intend to show him otherwise” - Gregor Kerr, 1% Network spokesperson

The 1% Network has announced details of the route of its Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt, due to take place on Saturday evening, 30th October. Among the venues which the event will visit are the homes of well-known developer Bernard McNamara and former AIB chairman Dermot Gleeson.

Press Release: Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt to visit homes of Bernard McNamara, Dermot Gleeson and others

“Brian Lenihan might claim that there is no pot of gold to be had from the wealthy. We intend to show him otherwise” - Gregor Kerr, 1% Network spokesperson

The 1% Network has announced details of the route of its Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt, due to take place on Saturday evening, 30th October. Among the venues which the event will visit are the homes of well-known developer Bernard McNamara and former AIB chairman Dermot Gleeson.

Announcing the details of the route, Gregor Kerr, spokesperson for the 1% Network said:

“The myth continues to be peddled that there is no wealth left in Ireland. Last year Brian Lenihan claimed that there is no pot of gold to be had from the wealthy. In reality however everyone knows that the wealthy are still wealthy.

The purpose of this tour is to show just where some of that wealth is. The pot of gold exists but the political will is not there to take from it because the politicians’ strings are being pulled by the owners of the wealth.”

Citing an analysis of wealth figures carried out by Tom O’Connor, Lecturer in Economics at Cork Institute of Technology , Brian Leeson, 1% Network spokesperson said:

“The fact that 33,000 millionaires have a net worth of €121 billion is proof positive that the wealth of the Celtic Tiger did not simply disappear into thin air. If the political will existed this incredible wealth could be used to enhance vital public services such as healthcare and education. Instead the government is proposing to commit an act of gross social vandalism in the December budget.

The fact that these individuals have cash reserves of €16.5billion means that they can be made to pay. The massive wealth divide in Ireland must be tackled. Our Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt has a very serious message – the huge wealth imbalance cannot be allowed to continue and the Irish people will not remain passive forever in the face of such injustice.”

The 1% network is a coalition of socialist groups which has come together to oppose the cutback agenda of the government and to promote a socialist alternative to the current socio-economic system. Organisations within the coalition include éirígí, Irish Socialist Network, Seomra Spraoi and the Workers Solidarity Movement. The name of the coalition was chosen to highlight the fact that just 1% of the population control in excess of 34% of the wealth of the state.

For more information, contact Gregor Kerr 086 1501151 or Brian Leeson 086 8071010 or log onto www.onepercentnetwork.org

1% Network Hallowe’en Treasure Hunt Route

Participants are encouraged to wear fancy dress along the theme of Zombie developers, Vampire bankers, Ghost estates and Ravenous black holes

Meeting Point: AIB Headquarters, Merrion Road Ballsbridge

Date: Saturday 30th October

Time: 6:30p.m.

The Route of the ‘Treasure Hunt’ will include stops at:

• AIB Headquarters, Merrion Road
AIB confirmed earlier this month that the amount of loans it is transferring to NAMA is just over €23bn.

• ‘Balhom’ No 4 Shrewsbury Rd. owned by Paul Coulson
Mr. Coulson negotiated the sale by the company he controls, Ardagh Glass, of the Irish Glass Bottle site for €412m in 2002. Coulson and his neighbours (Derek Quinlan who lives right next door at No. 6 and Bernard McNamara who lives round the corner on Ailesbury Road – both of these were members of the Becbay consortium who purchased the site) stood to make vast fortunes out of this deal. Not a thought was given to the plight of the 375 Workers who lost their jobs as a result. Coulson was estimated to be worth over €150 million in 2008.

• No. 6 Shrewsbury Rd. owned by Derek Quinlan
Mr. Quinlan has recently moved to Switzerland owing €600 million to Anglo Irish Bank. In 2004 he was one of the principal investors in a group which bought the luxury Savoy Hotel group for €1.13 billion

• No. 8 Shrewsbury Road, owned by Dermot Gleeson
Mr. Gleeson stepped down as chairman of AIB in 2009 but only after getting the bank bailout from the government. Gleeson was paid €475,000 in 2007 by AIB, at this stage they must think he was well worth it. On the night of 29th Sept. 2008 the government guaranteed the deposits, loans and obligations of the six Irish banks - a total sum of some €400 billion.

• No 21 Shrewsbury Rd. ‘Belmont’ – owned by Denis O’Brien
Mr. O’Brien made an estimated $300m from the sale of Esat Telecom to British Telecom in 2000 at the height of the technology boom. The awarding of the second mobile phone license to Esat Digifone is one of the matters being reviewed by the Moriarty Tribunal, which was established in 1997 to investigate allegations of payments to politicians.

• No 24 Shrewsbury Rd. ‘Walford’ – bought by a mystery buyer in 2005 for €58m
The mystery buyer has been trying to get Planning Permission for 9 houses. According to Irish Times of 30 Sept. 2010 this buyer was Gayle Killilea, wife of Developer Sean Dunne. In 2005 Dunne bought the nearby 4.84 acre Jurys Hotel site in Ballsbridge for €260m which worked out at €54m an acre (an Irish record at the time). Because of access concerns to the site, Dunne then purchased the Berkley Court Hotel for €119m, €57m an acre (breaking the record he himself had set with the Jurys Hotel site). One of Dunne’s advisers on the purchase was Richie Boucher who he described as ‘a very good friend’. Boucher is the current CEO of Bank Of Ireland.

• 22 Ailesbury Road – owned by Bernard McNamara
Mr. McNamara is supposedly bankrupt to the tune of €1.5 billion but this didn’t stop the business plan submitted by the developer to NAMA proposing he be paid €500,000 a year to help sort this out. This was dropped to €300,000. McNamara also used ‘Public Private Partnerships’ to get the contracts for a number of urban regeneration projects, projects under which he stood to make huge profits under the property prices of the Celtic Tiger. But when the Tiger collapsed McNamara simply walked away from those projects condemning hundreds of people in sub-standard accommodation like that of St Michael’s estate in Inchicore to further years of frustration.

Related Link: http://www.onepercentnetwork.org

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