Tuesday 20 March 2018

WATCH: Minister for State has a debate with herself as no other TDs are present in Dáil

Sarah-Jane Murphy

A Minister of State yesterday was met with deafening silence when she invited Opposition parties to suggest amendments to a Bill being debated in the Dáil.

Ann Phelan was the only TD who was present in the Dáil for the debate on The Prisons Bill.

Ms. Phelan is Minister for State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine and also serves as Minister for State at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.

The legislation in question, The Prisons Bill, deals with the closure of St Patrick's institution, a Dublin detention centre for those aged under 21.

Despite the poor attendance the wheels of democracy kept turning and the Minister proceeded to move the amendments and told Leas Cheann Comhairle Michéal Kitt that she agreed with her own amendments.

The Prisons Bill now returns to the Seanad so that new provisions can be debated.

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