Minister for Health Simon Harris said “nothing is off the table” in relation to the  future of the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Most senior Garda position in watchdog vacant for eight months, documents show

Dachshund pups  at an illegal puppy farm in North Tipperary which was raided  by the ISPCA and gardaí. Photograph: Fergal Shanahan

‘Industrial-scale dog-breeding’ is damaging Ireland’s reputation, says Clare Daly TD

It will be 2025 at the earliest before overseas citizens will be eligible to vote. Photograph: Alan Betson

Government approves start of work on improving voter registration process

Independent TD Catherine Connolly, who described Caranua as a classic example “of an institution becoming more important than the people it is meant to serve”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Caranua operating as though ‘more important than people it is meant to serve’

Taoiseach Enda Kenny with Minister for Health Simon Harris at the site of the National Children’s Hospital, at St James’s Campus, Rialto, Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

People Before Profit’s Gino Kenny compares leader’s ‘massive pension’ to nurses’ salaries

Richard Bruton: said  the sale of land was a matter for the Christian Brothers

Bruton says it would be ‘disappointing’ if education of children is compromised

Members of the Garda Emergency Response Unit take part in a training exercise. File photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Enda Kenny announces meeting on terrorism following Manchester bombing

Independents4Change TD Mick Wallace made claims about Cerberus as the Dáil debated the terms of reference for the commission of investigation into Nama. Photograph: Eric Luke

TD makes claims as former High Court judge is confirmed as chair of Project Eagle inquiry

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: ‘You have brought your children to a concert venue. You leave them outside as they go in to an adventure. To think some of them never came back.’ Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Dáil pays tribute to victims and condemns suicide bombing at Ariana Grande concert

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: entitled a pension of about €126,000 a year, plus a lump sum on retirement of €378,000, the Dáil was told. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Retiring politicians and public servants also benefit from favourable tax rules

The Taoiseach  will receive an Oireachtas pension based on his years as a TD as well as a pension based on his time as an office holder. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Enda Kenny’s retirement lump sum has been estimated at about € 378,000

Tributes have been paid in the Dáil to Michael Noonan who announced he will stand down as Minister for Finance and retire from politics at the next general election. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times.

Tributes paid to Fine Gael Minister who is to retire from politics at next general election

The Dáil has voted to suspend the sale of shares in AIB after an apparent gaffe by the Government. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Government fails to oppose Labour motion amid claims FG TDs distracted by Kenny exit

Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has announced his intention to step down. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Kenny describes Noonan’s contribution to restoration of economy as ‘extraordinary’

Taoiseach Enda Kenny  at the RDS for a British Irish Chamber of Commerce conference on Thursday morning. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Paschal Donohoe staunchly defends Kenny legacy against scathing SF, Solidarity attacks

 Sinn Féin defence spokesman Aengus Ó Snodaigh said a highly decorated detective reportedly took a case against An Garda for bullying, “alleging that he was forced to put illegal phone taps and traces on innocent people” and that no authority was given to track their phones.  File Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

System for judges to examine Garda phone tapping records is mere ‘rubber-stamping’

Mr Varadkar has launched a TV, radio, poster and online campaign with the message, Welfare Cheats Cheat us All. Photographs: The Irish Times

Martin claims Minister said tackling cheats would save €506m when real swindle €41m

Minister for Education Richard Bruton. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times.

Minister says legislation from Ruth Coppinger seeks ‘to move us to one type of school’

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Frances Fitzgerald. File photograph: Houses of the Oireachtas/PA Wire

Allegations an activist was wire-tapped are ‘shocking’, Richard Boyd Barrett says

Keen Enda Kenny observers suggest the Taoiseach is still reluctant to “release the hand of power”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Cabinet members not declaring their choice: ‘they’ve learnt a shut mouth catches no flies’

Brothers, Etienne (left) and Sabastien Licciardi, from Inchicore at the reopening of Goldenbridge cemetery on St Vincent’s Street, Inchicore, Dublin 8, and annual Daniel O’Connell commemoration. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Rededication ceremony also celebrated 170th anniversary of Daniel O’Connell who campaigned for and opened the Inchicore graveyard (...)

 LÉ ‘Eithne’ on a rescue operation in the Mediterranean in June 2015. Photograph: Irish Defence Forces

Paul Kehoe insists ‘no delay’ in deployment of vessel to Mediterranean to rescue refugees

Minister for Children Katherine Zappone said Tusla has a limited role where there is no evidence of a current risk of sexual abuse to children. She  said experienced social workers were dealing with high-priority cases. File photograph: iStockPhoto

Over 350 retrospective disclosures of child sex abuse reported in January-March 2017

Dara Quigley died on April 12th.

Investigation and GSOC inquiry underway following death of journalist and blogger

 Minister for Children Katherine Zappone:  State will be obliged to provide aftercare plan for 600 teenagers after September 1st. Photograph: Eric Luke

Funding secured to recruit 18 aftercare managers, says Minister for Children

Brexit chief negotiator pledges full EU support for Ireland

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar: completed review will be presented to the Oireachtas no later than September 2018. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Bill introduced in Seanad to allow 16, 17-year-olds to self-declare gender identity

Scorched land near Cloosh Valley, Co Galway, as members of the Defence Forces make their way across bogland after extinguishing gorse fires. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

Forestry destroyed in area ‘five times size of Phoenix Park’ in Cloosh Valley, says TD

BioAtlantis, a Tralee-based indigenous company, was granted a licence to harvest 753 hectares  of kelp (above). File photograph: Getty Images

Michael Collins TD outraged at licence to allow harvesting of seaweed in Bantry Bay

Sinn Féin president Gerry  Adams said blasphemy should have no place in the Constitution. He said the programme for government committed to holding a number of referendums, including one on the offence of blasphemy. File photograph: Getty Images

Taoiseach says other referendums ‘backed up’ and last blasphemy prosecution was in 1855

The Robin Hill apartment complex in south Dublin

TD says Nama refused to sell 15 apartments to council but sold block to Cerberus

Some of the six protesting TDs can be seen seated on the far left of the image as deputies stand at the beginning of Dáil business on the first day of the new requirement to stand for the Dáil prayer.

Ceann Comhairle ignores protest by TDs calling for separation of church and State

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar said 500 reports of suspected social welfare fraud had been received in the week after the campaign launch on April 18th. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Mick Wallace says Leo Varadkar would make more money if he targeted big business

People who receive the once-off annual domiciliary care grant as full-time carers of people with special needs would be eligible for the scheme, an estimated 80,000 people. Photograph: Getty Images

Under new Bill 80,000 people could benefit from scheme which could cost €70m a year

Seán Sherlock: said microplastics were an entirely unnecessary source of pollution and likely to have environmental impacts. Photograph: Alan Betson

Legislation bans beads that get injested by fish and enter human food chain

People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith said during the debate: “I’m not standing, no matter what I’m told to do, because my religion is my business and is not up for public scrutiny.”

Prayer retained along with 30 seconds of silent reflection by 97 votes to 18

Minister of State Catherine Byrne said that according to the latest HSE data, 135,000 patients did not attend new appointments last year. Photograph: Alan Betson

TD exasperated that SMS reminder mechanism not in place across State system

John Fitzpatrick at the Citizens’ Assembly. Richard Bruton said the Taoiseach’s approach to the abortion issue was a Citizens’ Assembly followed by an Oireachtas committee and then a move to legislation. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw

‘Middle Ireland’ may be more progressive than administration thinks, says Bríd Smith

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin  Photograph: Gareth Chaney, Collins

Family waiting for explanation for son’s death by driver who should have been in jail

TD and ministers pray in the Dáil chamber.  File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Ireland and UK only European parliaments to start business with prayer - Joan Collins

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin  claimed Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar had launched a national campaign on welfare fraud which overstated savings by more than 1,000 per cent. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Micheál Martin claims social protection fraud overstated by 1,000%, housing by 100%

Leaks were given to a German newspaper about the dinner meeting last week between British prime minister Theresa May and European Commission president Jean Claude Juncker. Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

As Irish Government publishes position paper, rationale against two-track talks questioned

The Government has often struggled to make up the numbers for debates that start before noon even though there are 158 TDs. Photograph: Alan Betson

Halving of quorum for debates before noon agreed by all sides without debate

Under proposals agreed by the business committee, the traditional Dáil prayer will continue to be said both in Irish and English, while a period of 30 seconds for silent reflection will also be introduced. File photograph: Alan Betson

Solidarity TD criticises decision to discuss proposals to continue with tradition at 10pm

Two friends, Nathan Fullerton (17) and Nathan Farrell (18), died when the car they were in crashed through a wall and then into a tree. Photograph: North West Newpix

Two teenagers died when the car they were in crashed through a wall and into a tree

The Willow Wheelers peloton prepare for the 160km charity cycle. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Drought and famine-afflicted Pokot region of country to benefit from cycling club’s efforts

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald:  said significant progress had been made in resolving long-stay asylum cases. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Irish Refugee Council highlights lack of support for people who were granted asylum

Social Democrat TD Róisín Shortall at the launch of the Equal Status (Amendment) Bill 2017 at Leinster House, Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Social Democrats introduce legislation in Dáil seeking to end ‘baptism barrier’

 Independents4Change TD Clare Daly has warned  that houses in north Co Dublin  are likely to fall into the sea because of a delay in carrying out coastal protection work. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Independents4Change TD Clare Daly calls for immediate action to protect homes

Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin said there was a “huge gulf between the Government’s words and the Government’s action when it comes to climate change.” Photograph: Getty Images The Environmental Protection Agency says Ireland is falling hopelessly behind in meeting emissions targets set by the European Commission for 2020. Photograph: Getty Images

Catherine Martin says State faces penalties of up to €5 billion without policy reversal

The Sinn Féin motion calling for Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan to be sacked was defeated by 98 votes to 46. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Sinn Féin move fails as Dáil votes against effort to give Policing Authority more power

The Dáil has adjourned by agreement until Tuesday May 2nd - 19 days’ time.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Ceann Comhairle tells politicians to get some rest after ‘frenetic’ political activity

Fine Gael, its Independent Government partners and Fianna Fáil backed the report on the future funding of water as the Dáil accepted it by 96 votes to 48. Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Minister to consider how to issue refunds after House votes to accept Oireachtas report

Fianna Fáil’s Barry Cowen said Labour’s Alan Kelly, above, was still spinning from the number of U-turns he made as a minister. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Fianna Fáil’s Barry Cowen estimates 92 per cent of households will not pay for water

The intoxicating liquor  Bill  is supported by all parties but opposed by a number of Independents and Senator Joe O’Reilly. Photograph: PA Wire

Joe O’Reilly opposes Bill saying ‘nonsense’ to say workers will get extra pay if ban lifted

 Minister for Children Katherine Zappone: “It does not mean that we have closed off redress for those who have been in mother and baby homes.” Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

Issue of redress for people in mother and baby homes not ruled out says Minister

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald.  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Taoiseach tells McDonald ‘You want everything for nothing and pay for nothing’

Leo Varadkar: “That is how bulk buying operates. You get a significant discount.” Photograph: Getty Images

‘If I am buying toilet rolls I buy 24-roll pack and get a bloody good discount,’ says Minister

Jim O’Callaghan: there were shameful errors by the Garda regarding breath tests “and I regret to say this [was]  dishonestly recorded on the Pulse system”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Jim O’Callaghan: A blemish on our justice system that 14,700 wrongful convictions not overturned

Leo Varadkar says reduced social welfare payments “are a means of encouraging jobseekers to engage with activation measures”. Photograph: Eric Luke

Willie O’Dea says people are forced into low-paid jobs and unsuitable training schemes

CEOs of bailed-out banks have had their pay capped at €500,000 but Bank of Ireland’s boss Richie Boucher has been above that level since his 2009 appointment. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Enda Kenny: Cap remains if person to succeed current CEO comes from internal panel

Minister for Housing Simon Coveney said he would consult with the Attorney General before proceeding.Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Sinn Féin accuses Fianna Fáil of U-turn and shifting back to Fine Gael position on issue

A total of 9,345 prisoners were granted temporary release last year compared to 10,767 the previous year

A total of 352 prisoners are currently serving life in 14 prisons, including 10 women

Greenhouse gases: Ireland books all emissions for the 15 aviation companies registered in the State, even if their aircraft never touch down in Ireland. Photograph: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty

Environmental Protection Agency says Ireland must break fossil-fuel dependence

Ruth Coppinger TD raised the row between the women’s national soccer  team and the FAI to highlight what she called the “discrimination and unequal treatment of sport generally”. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Minister for Sport told FAI should be called into account in general for its finances

Independent TD Michael Healy-Rae told Dáil: “Perhaps people should be removed if necessary. It is about time . . . It is a disgrace.” Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Healy-Rae claims ‘genuine people who breed and race greyhounds being blackguarded’

Minister for Finance Michael Noonan believes the Irish economy remains resilient, despite Brexit. Photograph: Jasper Juinen / Bloomberg

Taoiseach says referendum on outcome of negotiations ‘not envisaged’

Andrew Wakefield: was struck from register because his anti-vaccination study had been discredited. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

Fine Gael TD Kate O’Connell had thought ‘witch doctors had gone out with the Dark Ages’ as struck-off doctor Andrew Wakefield plan(...)

Michael McGrath said an issue appeared to have arisen in areas insurance such as employer liability and public liability ’because of the lack of predictability and the inconsistency in court awards’.    Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Michael McGrath: Insurance for rural hotel rose from €22,000 to €40,000

Taoiseach  Enda Kenny: He rejected claims by Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald that the EU negotiating document dealing with the North and the peace process “is vague and conditional”.  Photograph: Darrin Zammit Lupi/Reuters

Taoiseach insists British and EU assurances on Border and peace process are not ‘soft’

Michael Noonan said the Department and Minister for Finance will be within the scope of the terms of reference. Photograph: Alan Betson

Noonan says Taoiseach’s department will be lead office as Finance is ‘interested party’

 Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald (right) and Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan at Garda Headquarters. Photograph: Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

Attorney General examining report before publication, says Taoiseach

Gay O’Callaghan, Annette O’Callaghan and their son, David O’Callaghan, had pleaded guilty in December at Naas District Court to eight counts against them related to the possessions.

Yeomanstown Stud O’Callaghan family members in court for horse drugs

Richard Boyd Barrett and others  at the People Before Profit national conference in Wynn’s Hotel, Dublin: “The big wasters are the Government who have failed to fix the 40 per cent leaks in the water mains systems.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Party could win up to four new seats in next election, says Richard Boyd Barrett

  Noel Kelly, Denis Rudd and John Gannon picket  at Heuston Station last Friday. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

‘I took home €600-€640 a week last year. With the proposed cuts, I’m looking at €500’

Chris Horn of Atlantic Bridge Capital – which invested €1.5 million into  Kastus last December – with Kastus founder John Browne. The firm has won a Knowledge Transfer Ireland award for its advance against superbugs. Photograph: Shane O’Neill Photography

DIT start-up says its solution can protect surfaces from fatal drug-resistant superbugs

David Stanton: “this arrangement is not something to be thrown away blindly without care for its replacement, particularly as we have a housing crisis”

Minister says guaranteed bed, food and medical attention ‘not to be thrown away blindly’

Fianna Fáil spokeswoman on children Anne Rabbitte expressed concern about the level of underage drinking among Irish teenagers

Tánaiste criticises ‘very ambivalent attitude’ in Dáil to alcohol

The Government lost by 90 votes to 51 on a Fianna Fáil motion to halt plans to regionalise the services. File photograph: Alan Betson

Administration defeated over move to regionalise Citizens Information outlets

Minister for Transport Shane Ross ‘is doing his job’ and had worked to achieve a 33 per cent increase in support for public service provision for Bus Éireann, his cabinet colleage Richard Bruton said. Photograph: Alan Betson

Minister criticises ‘cheque book’ approach to industrial relations during Dáil exchanges

Patrick O’Donovan said issue was close to his heart as an information office was closed in his constituency. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Research for authority shows low sales at Dublin Airport compared to other locations

Minister of State for Health Catherine Byrne said she was “sick to my stomach” trying to understand that 12 years on “we are here again in the Dáil Chamber talking about the location and site of the new national children’s hospital”. Photograph: Alan Betson

Opposers of new hospital ‘didn’t bother’ raising concerns during planning process

Michael Noonan told the Dáil he absolutely refuted the claims that he and his officials had acted inappropriately in meeting Cerberus. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Heated debate in Dáil over Minister’s controversial meeting with US investment firm

Independent TDs Danny Healy-Rae has said figures to support drink-driving legislation cannot be trusted. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

TD calls for withdrawal of proposed legislation in wake of Garda breath tests debacle

A total of 119,000 students learned English in Ireland in 2016, up by 11,871 on the previous year. Photograph: Getty Images

Language students from 101 countries, but Italians, Spanish and French most common

Mick Wallace has claimed  former Garda commissioner Martin Callinan was in the force’s Phoenix Park headquarters on several days last week. File photograph: Eric Luke

Independent TD claims Martin Callinan visited Garda HQ several times last week

 Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald: said she would consider a Patten-like commission of investigation or an independent review

SF asks how Minister can have confidence in Garda Commissioner who tells media first

  Minister for Children Katherine Zappone  did not give a date for publication but she expected to be able to “clarify the time frame for the Government’s deliberative process in the coming week”. Photograph: Eric Luke

Zappone says delay due to time required to respond appropriately to recommendations

Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Minister for Justice and Equality Frances Fitzgerald and Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan pictured at Garda Head Quarters, Phoenix Park in 2015. Photograph: Colin Keegan

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin says Minister for Justice ‘has run for cover’

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has  said the Government believed the level of public concern  was so profound it was time to conduct “a thorough, comprehensive and independent root-and-branch review” of the Garda. File photograph: Getty Images

Government continues to have confidence in Garda Commissioner, restates Taoiseach

HSE director general Tony O’Brien: SF TD David Cullinane described Mr O’Brien’s demeanour and approach as “obfuscatory and not helpful”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

FF, SF say Tony O’Brien must clarify contradictions in his evidence on ‘Grace’ case

Minister for Children Katherine Zappone said the purpose of Tusla’s meeting with the school would be to explore the use of the suspension process and offer guidance on alternative strategies. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Principal of Drogheda secondary school says vast majority are for violent behaviour

Minister for Jobs Mary Mitchell O’Connor: She said  it was  not an option for the IDA or her department to enter a new contract with ConnectIreland without a new tendering process as the maximum number of extensions had already been granted. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Contractor creates jobs at less than half the price of State agency, claims FF spokesman

People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith raised the issue of Ibrahim Halawa whose trial in Egypt was suspended on Wednesday for the 20th time. File photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Bríd Smith asks for legal mechanism to allow intervention in Egypt’s legal system

Operations are underway to secure the Leinster House campus and other locations around the State following Wednesday’s terror attack near the House of Commons in London, Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald has said. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times.

Tánaiste says ‘safety and security’ of locations around the State a ‘prime concern’

The site of the mass grave for children who died in  Tuam. What happened “is just so horrific, so terrible and such a shame on Ireland”, said Sinn Féin’s Martin Kenny. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

‘It is easy to understand how people were able to do these things’, says Martin Kenny

Enda Kenny: the Taoiseach said that he had spoken directly to Mr Trump about the situation for undocumented Irish.  Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Mick Barry: If St Patrick arrived in Ireland he would probably end up in direct provision

Niall Collins: The Fianna Fáil  TD said one Christian Brothers document was “effectively a contract for sale under which boys were sold out of the industrial school into the labour market”. Photograph: Alan Betson

Richard Bruton unaware of any power to seize industrial school ’private’ documents

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said a redress scheme established for victims of abuse in schools was designed to limit accessibility. Photograph:  Collins.

Micheál Martin says State’s attitude is based on limiting people’s access to redress scheme

A shrine, with an image of the Virgin Mary on part of the site of the former mother-and-baby home run by the Bon Secours nuns in Tuam, Co Galway, where the remains of an unknown number of babies and toddlers were found buried. Photograph: Reuters/Peter Nicholls

Katherine Zappone: Nothing should be said or done to undermine commission’s work

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