Brid-Smith-2a-241x300Bríd Smith TD has urged Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan, to halt the sale of NAMA assets which include hundreds of housing units in Dublin and other urban areas.

Projects Ruby and Emerald are set to be sold to a consortium that includes Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs. While 80% of these are commercial, the portfolios contain close to 1000 housing units that could be used for social and affordable homes for those currently in dire housing need, the TD stated.

Deputy Smith also demanded that the minister instruct NAMA to make these units available to local authorities to purchase, stating that “We have the worst housing crisis in the state’s history yet this Government continues to preside over a situation where foreign banks, vulture funds and REITs can buy units at bargain basement prices while those most in need will continue to live in emergency accommodation or in grossly overcrowded and unsuitable places”

Deputy Smith continued to point out that the group of Dáil Deputies had, two week ago, tried to get the Minister to halt any further sale of NAMA assets to vulture funds until a complete review of housing units still owned by NAMA was completed.  “The units and sites currently owned by NAMA could make a big impact on the housing crisis. Instead they are just been used to bolster the profits of vested interests, NAMA has sold sites that could have developed over 20,000 housing units to private interests, who have built less than a thousand despite the dire need for homes. We suspect developers are hoarding land banks to speculate on future property price rises, regardless of the human suffering involved.”