According to Sligo/Nth Leitrim Senator Susan O'Keeffe, Declan Ganley’s behaviour in this referendum is a sign of the creeping privatisation of Irish politics. Mr Ganely is not elected. He has no party. Libertas is a pseudonym for himself and for his own business interests and ultimately for secrecy. Libertas gives him the cloak of respectability in the political arena under which he can then bulldoze his own business interests – without ever apparently declaring them.
"If he declared those interests like other groups lobbying in this referendum, that would be acceptable. Instead he persists in hiding his activities, his associates and his backers."
Senator O'Keeffe continued, "Specifically I ask what relationship does Declan Ganley currently have with Crispin Odey, a UK hedge fund manager whose private company Odey Asset management has, according to Odey, £4.5billion under its control. The Sunday Times reckons his personal wealth (with his wife Nichola Pease) at £445million this year, 2012. Mr Odey funded Mr Ganley’s No campaign during the Lisbon Treaty in 2009.
"We also know that Mr Ganley has recently set up a company with the economist Declan Ganley and economist Constantin Gurdgiev, St Columbanus AG — a Swiss asset-management company.Both men are shareholders in the new venture.
"In its literature, St Columbanus AG appears to deliberately target concerns about confidence in the creditworthiness of the Irish banks."
The Collooney-based senator added, “The firm provides a safe haven for assets in the midst of the continuing global financial crisis, a service that appears increasingly important in the current European context of fragile peripheral economies, and an unstable eurozone banking sector,” the company’s website states.
"By coincidence, Mr Odey has also recently set up a business in Switzerland – an investment management firm called Odey Bruellan.
"Are these two Swiss-based companies connected in any way? What is the attraction of Switzerland? How much profit do all these men and their companies make through their Swiss businesses when the euro is unstable?
"I condemn this privatisation of Irish politics and the concept of individuals, posturing as organisations, with private, undeclared interests, being involved in a debate on our future without having to account for their own interests and who stand potentially to gain from a weak euro." concluded Senator O'Keeffe.