Tuesday 24 April 2018

No early election as Kenny packs up his diary

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has agreed to a busy schedule (Photo: Frank McGrath)
Taoiseach Enda Kenny has agreed to a busy schedule (Photo: Frank McGrath)
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has agreed to a packed diary for the next month, indicating that he has no intention of calling an election before February.

He has confirmed his participation in a number of foreign events and said the Dáil will definitely return on January 13.

Fourteen bills are due to be published over the Christmas break and the Cabinet will sit on January 5 to decide on its priorities for the month.

The next day Mr Kenny will travel to the Netherlands before spending two days in Germany as part of a trade mission with Enterprise Ireland. He is scheduled to speak at the World Economic Forum in Davos from January 20-22, when he will return home for the Fine Gael Ard Fheis. By that stage, he also intends to have hosted a jobs summit in Dublin and launched a new regional jobs strategy.

Speaking to reporters, Mr Kenny said he would work to get the Commission of Investigation into IBRC back on track before calling the election "to make it clear that the Government are committed to looking at the question of changing the terms of reference to be more specific, and provide the financial resources for the Commission to do its job".

The Taoiseach claimed he had not considered any future government options outside a Fine Gael and Labour coalition.

Asked whether there were any parties he'd rule out sharing power with, Mr Kenny replied: "I am not going there. I've set my stall on Fine Gael and Labour and I put my trust in the people. We'll make our case."

He also avoided questions when pressed as to whether he would work with Independents such as former minister Michael Lowry, but added: "This country was driven over a cliff. It's taken a great deal of distress and difficulty for so many people to get it back on the highway. It's very easy to drive your new-found vehicle off the road again. We've no intention of doing that."

Irish Independent

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