This government promised a “democratic revolution”. The reality has been that key economic documents are released to the Bundestag before the Dáil, and briefings on the insolvency legislation are given to the banks before the people’s representatives.

Yesterday, the Government held a press conference to announce it would be publishing the Personal Insolvency Bill on Friday, and then refused to answer questions on the content of the Bill. After that, they sat down with the bankers, showed them the Bill, and answered all their questions.

I have been contacted by constituents anxious to know what the legislation will mean for them. I’ve had to say that, even though the banks are fully briefed on the legislation, I will have no information till Friday.

This is a disgrace, and makes a mockery of this Government’s stated commitment to improve the standing of the Dáil. Their Programme for Government stated: “We believe that in recent years an over-powerful Executive has turned the Dáil into an observer of the political process rather than a central player and that this must be changed.”

Briefing the banks on legislation days before releasing it to the Dáil and citizens makes a nonsense of this.