Cllr Anthony Kelly has demanded that mortgage holders be given the benefit of interest rate decreases immediately and has denounced those banks who have refused to pass on the reductions to their under pressure customers so far. He was speaking following a Sinn Féin protest outside Bank of Ireland on Wexford’s quay front last Friday.
Cllr Kelly said;
“There are people in real trouble with their mortgages because of an economic mess that has nothing to do with them. They have been forsaken by the very institutions that this state has placed itself in danger of ruin to protect – our banking institutions. The banks are not even going to pass on the ECB’s interest rate cut to their customers, despite everything that has been done to secure their continued existence. It’s scandalous.”
“There is widespread mortgage distress, but the government has done nothing to help people. Now, it won’t even stand up to the banks which have not passed on this interest rate cut. The Central Bank has confirmed that 100,000 households are in trouble with their mortgages and 100 people’s homes were repossessed in the last three months. How many families must lose their homes before our government takes meaningful action?”
At the protest, New Ross Sinn Féin rep. Oisín O’Connell called upon the government to keep their promises by making banks pass on all interest rate cuts.
"Let's be clear: every man, woman and child in this state is on the hook for €15,000 - to bailout the banks. Because of this, the banks get cheaper credit from the European Central Bank. They then turn around, and charge us more, for the same money they get cheaper - because we bailed them out! This is a double injustice.”
“We, the people, got AIB (which is 99% owned by our state) to finally pass on interest rate cuts, to customers last week. This was the pressure of people power. The other banks need to get the message: we won't accept a bank-owned state”
“The banks are defying the government and the people are paying the price. The government needs to answer us: just whose side are you on, anyway?” he concluded.