Compulsory Irish rule to be lifted for lawyers
THE Government is abolishing the requirement for barristers and solicitors to pass an Irish exam to practice their trade, writes Michael Brennan.
The move, which will anger Irish language groups, comes as the cabinet was told that the lack of Irish-speaking translators is causing serious delays in converting EU documents into Irish.
Foreign Affairs Minister Dermot Ahern has also urged his cabinet colleagues to use the Irish language more during their visits to the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers, to justify its inclusion as an official EU language.
A Government spokesman said the Irish language requirement for barristers and solicitors would be abolished as part of the forthcoming Miscellaneous Provisions Bill. It was part of move to abolish things which were no longer practical or realistic, he said.
The Oireachtas translation unit is currently helping the EU.