Finance Minister, Mário Centeno, will not appreciate the latest attempt to prove he is a liar as the new committee of inquiry into the 'goings on' at Caixa Geral de Depósitos swings into action, calling first the controversial millionaire former boss of the bank, António Domingues.
The inquiry kicks off on April 28th and will look specifically at the Ministry of Finance’s performance in the appointment and later dismissal of the previous board of directors of the troubled bank.
The president of this second Caixa Geral inquiry, the Social Democrat MP José Pedro Aguiar-Branco, confirmed today that the committee first will hear what António Domingues has to say, followed by the governor of the Bank of Portugal, Carlos Costa, the Assistant Secretary of State and Finance, Ricardo Mourinho Félix, and then the Finance Minister, Mário Centeno.
In a second phase, personalities such as Elsa Roncon, former Director General of the Treasury and Finance, Francisco Sá Carneiro, a lawyer from CS Associados, and the consulting firm McKinsey who advised Domingues in his negotiations prior to his taking on the role of president of the beleaguered State owned bank.
Left Bloc members of the committee wanted only to look at the board minutes during the four month period in which the bank was run by António Domingues, but the former coalition parties’ representatives have gone for gold by demanding that the inquiry looks at the appointment, the management and the mass resignation of Caixa Geral's previous board of directors who famously refused to submit income and asset statements and then left in a well-orchestrated huff.
The PSD and CDS-PP committee members have requested all the documentation between the Government and Caixa Geral’s former board. These records will include the killer text messages exchanged between Domingues and the Finance Minister Mário Centeno, which were requested by the first committee but blocked by its government supporters.
The new committee requests that, "all documentation exchanged between the Ministry of Finance and the administration led by António Domingues, regarding the amendment of the Statute of the Public Manager law and implications, in particular as regards the income and asset statements, including declarations, notes and communiqués issued by either party."
The thrust of this second commission of inquiry is to determine whether it is true or not that the Finance Minister negotiated a waiver for António Domingues having to submit his financial statements, which has been denied by Mário Centeno and should lead to acute embarrassment and resignation, or sacking, if he is found to have lied to parliament.