Friday 26 May 2017

Kenny hopeful of being re-elected as Taoiseach in the coming hours

Independents studying ‘A Partnership for a Fairer Ireland’

Enda Kenny. Photo: Reuters
Enda Kenny. Photo: Reuters

Group Political Editor

TAOISEACH Enda Kenny has indicated that he hopes to Independents will sign-off on a programme for government before the Dáil adjourns at 4.30pm today.

The Fine Gael leader said it was not yet possible to know for definite when the final breakthrough will come.

“To be straight up about it I can’t say that the matter will be concluded,” he told Fianna Fáil’s Micheál Martin this morning.

Mr Martin had asked whether the Dáil might have to sit tomorrow to allow for a fourth and final attempt at election a Taoiseach.

Mr Kenny said a “great deal of drafting” was done overnight on a document which is now being discussed with TDs from the Independent Alliance, Rural Five and a small number of others.

Read more: How Micheal Martin won the sweetest deal in Fianna Fail history

He indicated the new programme for government will have the title: “Partnership for a Fairer Ireland”.

The entire Dáil day has been set aside for a debate on gangland crime and garda resources – but Mr Kenny said he would return to the House with an update if progress is made.

Earlier, Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney said he believes a vote for Taoiseach can take place today.

He added that a Government could be in place by the weekend.

Minister Frances Fitzgerald agreed a that a deal could be done today if Independents sign up to it.

"It is however up to Enda Kenny when a Cabinet is formed," she added.

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