Full recount ordered in Wicklow

 

Voting has been suspended in Wicklow until tomorrow after former Fianna Fail minister Dick Roche demanded a full recount.

The first count, which was completed last night, showed Fianna Fáil took just 10.48 per cent of the first preference vote in the five-seat constituency.

Fine Gael won 39.21 per cent, Labour 17.01 per cent and Sinn Féin 9.97 per cent. The Green Party achieved 1.44 per cent, with others including Independents taking 20.89 per cent of the vote.

After the 13th count this evening, Mr Roche was about to be eliminated. He then called for a recount and the returning officer suspended counting until the morning.

It is expected sitting Fine Gael TDs Andrew Doyle and Billy Timmins will be elected alongside party newcomer Simon Harris, giving the party three out of five seats.

Labour's Anne Ferris is also expected to be elected, with the final seat between Independent Stephen Donnelly and Sinn Féin's John Brady.

Arriving at the count this morning, Mr Roche told reporters he would not call the result "until the smoke has left the battlefield".

In the event of not being elected, Mr Roche said he still had "some work to do in Europe" and while there was clearly a need for the party to rebuild in Wicklow, he refused to say whether he would be available to stand at the next election.