Former Minister for Justice and Fine Gael TD, Alan Shatter, has called on developer Johnny Ronan to seek the removal of the phrase "Arbeit Macht Frei" from his statement to the banking inquiry. 

The German phrase, which means "work makes you free" was placed over the entrances to a number of Nazi concentration camps during World War II.

Mr Shatter said it was beyond his personal comprehension that Mr Ronan would include the phrase "which greeted the tragic and doomed victims of Nazi tyranny as they entered the Auschwitz Concentration Camp" in a witness statement to the banking inquiry. 

Mr Shatter said "it is entirely inappropriate that such a phrase appear on the Irish Parliament's website available for global viewing."

"I do not know what consideration, if any, was given to redacting this offensive and despicable phrase which is synonymous with Nazi inhumanity" he said.

Mr Shatter also said it was "totally bizarre" that Mr Ronan also included the phrase translated into Irish. 

In his statement to the inquiry, published today, Mr Ronan said that NAMA abused its powers and was led by people who did not understand what they were doing.

He said it was led by former civil servants with no proper real estate experience and they made decisions based on personal likes and dislikes, which gave little or no consideration to the ultimate return for the Irish taxpayer.

He said NAMA was granted such wide reaching and potentially unconstitutional powers that it was always open to abuse.

He said that if NAMA had not called in its loans, Treasury Holdings would still be operating and would have repaid all of its debts.

He also criticised the agency's decision to move on Battersea Power Station, calling it one of the costliest decisions in the history of the state.

He said Battersea Power Station would be one of the most profitable property developments, not only in Europe, but throughout the world

Mr Ronan said it was a great pity that the Malaysian taxpayer will earn billions of pounds from its redevelopment rather than the Irish taxpayer.

He was a 50% shareholder in Treasury Holdings which has since been liquidated and his own company RGRE has now exited NAMA.

He said Treasury's relationship with NAMA began well but deteriorated and the agency also forced them to sell their entire Chinese business.

According to a source from the inquiry, all statements go through a legal process before publication and any redaction necessary is made at that point.

The source said other than that, it is the policy that the statement be published in full.

In a statement this evening Labour TD, Robert Dowds, said he supported Mr Shatter's comments. "The phrase is closely associated with the darkest days of European history, and really has no place in 21st century political discourse" he said. "It is now incumbent on Mr Ronan to rectify this matter" he added.