Last-minute notice of major BBC Spotlight on NAMA tonight

Just hours before it is due to be televised, the BBC has announced that a year-long investigation into what it has described as a 'scandal' in the sale of NAMA assets in Northern Ireland will tonight be broadcast.

The hour-long programme was shown at 8.30pm tonight on BBC One Northern Ireland- a prime time slot immediately after Eastenders normally reserved for Panorama and more than two hours earlier that Spotlight’s usual slot after the late news.

The programme was not in the original BBC listings for today and the corporation only announced the screening about four hours before the programme is to be broadcast.

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The programme is believed to investigate allegations of millions of pounds in fees paid as part of the £1.2bn deal to sell NAMA’s Northern Ireland loan book to US investment fund Cerberus.

All those against whom allegations of wrong-doing have been levelled – including very senior politicians – have denied that they acted improperly.

The deal is now the subject of a criminal inquiry being undertaken by the National Crime Agency.