Irish Water's €50m spend on consultants and Eddie Irvine's court troubles before an Italian court feature on today's front pages.The top 12 news and sport stories are listed below.
1 Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore has heaped pressure on Irish Water to prove €50m it has spent on consultants is value for the taxpayer. His comments came after Irish Water chief John Tierney sparked outrage when he revealed that half the €100m cost of setting up the company was paid out to consultants, the Irish Independent reports.
2 Almost half of all Ireland’s children with Down’s Syndrome have lost their discretionary medical cards, a leading advocacy group have claimed. Down Syndrome Ireland believes approximately 1,000 children with the disability have lost their card and that the practice of providing them with discretionary medical cards when they are born has ceased, the Irish Examiner reports.
3 A Dublin man accused of beheading his mother told a friend “I might be evil”. James Dunleavy allegedly murdered his mother Phyllis Dunleavy (66), who is from Marino in North Dulbin, close to his home in Edinburgh, the Herald reports.
4 Formula F1 driver Eddie Irvine is unlikely to spend a single day in jail, despite being sentenced to six months in prison in Italy. Irvine (48) is planning to appeal the sentence after an Italian court found him guilty of “mutual injury” after a brawl over a woman in a Milan nightclub in December 2008, the Herald reports.
5 A brother and sister are set to be charged later this morning with the murder of pensioner Thomas Horan at his home in the Cambridge Court apartment complex in Ringsend, the Irish Daily Star reports.
6 Bank of Ireland is planning to release €33 billion in “new” lending into the Irish economy by the end of 2017. In an exclusive interview with BOI boss Richie Boucher, the Irish Times reports that the ambitious strategy is part of the bank’s five year plan. He was also reported as stating that the number of repossessions of owner occupied homes would be in the hundreds this year, but would always be a “last resort”.
7 Five of the seven men accused of breaking into a family’s home in Cashel, Co Tipperary, in November have been granted bail. Four of the seven men accused have been freed on High Court bail. A fifth man has also been granted bail but has yet to take it up, the Irish Daily Mail reports.
8 A newborn baby was found dead in a toilet bowl after his mother gave birth in a bathroom, the Irish Sun reports.
10 The Government has been forced into an embarrassing overhaul of Ireland’s new personal insolvency regime three months after it came into force, the Irish Independent reports. The new system has been by a very low uptake because many view it as too costly and complicated.
11 Leinster coach Matt O’Connor is confident that Jamie Heaslip and Sean O’Brien will stay with the club despite reports linking them to talks with French clubs. O’Connor also revealed that O’Brien could be out for the season after complications arose during surgery on his dislocated shoulder, the Irish Independent reports.
12 Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea has revealed that boss David Moyes’ struggling squad have been putting in extra time in training in a bid to get their season back on track. De Gea says the extra training is helping players to improve, the Herald reports.