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Bertie snubs Miriam

TAOISEACH Bertie Ahern has not mentioned his separated wife Miriam in his entry in celebrity bible, Who's Who.


TAOISEACH Bertie Ahern has omitted any mention of his separated wife Miriam from his entry in the celebrity bible, Who's Who.

Inclusion in Who's Who - which contains potted biographies of 32,000 of some of the richest, most famous and most influential people in the world - is by invitation only. It is an accolade conferred on comparatively few.

While the Taoiseach chose to name his late parents Cornelius and Julia, his entry goes on, "m 1975 (separated)". Mr Ahern, who lists his education as Rathmines Coll of Commerce and University Coll Dublin, says his profession is "accountant". He also omits his two daughters Cecelia, the writer, and Georgina, who is married to Westlife's Nicky Byrne. He lists his recreations as "sports, reading".

There are now two Aherns in Who's Who for the first time. The Taoiseach has been joined in the prestigious 2007 edition by Foreign Affairs minister Dermot Ahern. Also included for the first time are fashion designer John Rocha and Gate Theatre artistic director, Michael Colgan.

In his brief and modest entry, Dermot Ahern, 51, mentions his father, Jerry, but not his mother (which is unusual as most people in Who's Who like to feature the names of both parents). He does, however, mention his wife, Maeve, and their two daughters.

He lists his recreations as "windsurfing, skiing, golf".

Michael Colgan, 56, is also making his first appearance in Who's Who this year. Coincidentally, he and the Taoiseach were married in the same year, 1975, and both are now separated. But in his entry, Mr Colgan mentions the names of his estranged wife and both parents.

John Rocha, 53, the award-winning fashion designer based at Ely Place, Dublin, says he has been married for 16 years and mentions his wife, Odette.

At six lines, Rocha's is the briefest of the three new Dublin entries. Dermot Ahern and the Taoiseach take up 10 lines each, while Michael Colgan needs 17 lines. This compares to the 27 lines required by Dr Ian Paisley.

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams, 58, takes up 11 lines - in which he mentions his wife, Colette, and also the fact that he was "interned for suspected terrorist activity in 1971 and 1973, subsequently imprisoned; released,1976."

Martin McGuinness, 56, is much more reticent about his life, and takes up just five lines. He doesn't mention any partners, past or present; doesn't mention his parents' names; or give details about his education.

Neither he nor Mr Adams list any recreations.

Lady Paisley of St George's, the wife of Dr Paisley, makes her debut in Who's Who this year, after being made a life peer, entitling her to sit in the House of Lords in London.

She doesn't give her birthdate and she and her husband are kept apart, alphabetically, by the Catholic Bishop ofPaisley.

All are now in Who's Who until they die, when they will be automatically transferred to Who Was Who. Other notable politicians who have been included for a number of years are Finance Minister Brian Cowen and the Health Minister Mary Harney.

Neither Mr Cowen nor Ms Harney give their precise birthdates.

Ms Harney prefers to appear under her maiden name, rather than her married name, Geoghegan.

Altogether there are nearly one thousand new names in this year's edition.

Everyone - with the possible exception of the fugitive Lord Lucan, who vanished, without leaving a forwarding address, in 1974 - is invited to compile his or her own entry, so celebrities can include or exclude whatever they like, and their entries can be as long or as short as they wish.

British newspaper columnist Julie Burchill gives her recreations as "sex and shopping", while artist and Spitting Images creator Roger Law, 65, says one of his recreations is "over age sex".