The Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has written to Galway-West TD Noel Grealish asking him to clarify the 'apparent ethnic basis' of his comments about Nigerians.
Deputy Grealish singled out the nationality while asking a question about payments leaving the country a fortnight ago.
He suggested in the Dáil that hundreds of millions of euro a year was being sent from Ireland to Nigeria, querying whether this money was the proceeds of crime.
He claimed that over the past eight years over €10bn has left Ireland by way of personal transfers.
He claimed this included €843m to Lithuania, €1bn to France, €1.54bn to Poland, €2.7bn to the UK and €3.54bn to Nigeria.
He said: "Taoiseach transfers to other EU countries I can understand - for example money being transferred to the United Kingdom, our nearest neighbour".
"But Taoiseach 3.54bn transferred to one non-EU country is astronomical.
"Has Revenue or the Department of Finance any way of tracking this money, or where it is coming from?
"Can I ask you Taoiseach: are there mechanisms in place to ensure that the money that leaves this country in personal remittances has been fully accounted for within the Irish Revenue or tax system and is not the proceeds of crime or fraud".
"An awful lot of it is genuine money, but I just want to ensure a commitment from your Government that there's proper controls in place.
"Money being transferred out of Ireland without proper controls or monitoring needs to stop, Taoiseach."
He was called a 'racist' in the Dáil by other TDs, and the figures he cited from the World Bank are disputed by the Government.
It says the actual amount of money sent from Ireland to Nigeria each year through personal remittances is €17m.
Now Minister Donohoe has written to the Indpendent TD, saying he was disappointed at the apparent ethnic basis of the question.
He said it is wrong to single out one country without evidence of wrong-doing.
The Minister called on Mr Grealish to clarify his statement and said he is satisfied as minister that measures are in place to ensure money leaving the country comes from legitimate sources.
Complicating the picture here is the fact that the Government relies on Deputy Grealish for support in most Dáil votes.
Reporting by Sean Defoe