Dublin Mid-West result: Yes 73.27% and No 26.73%

‘I think it’s a good and important day for Irish women. There’s a lot of pent-up feeling about this’

Former tanaiste Frances Fitzgerald said she hoped to see legislation allowing for terminations passed by the Dáil as quickly as possible. Photograph: Collins

Former tanaiste Frances Fitzgerald said she hoped to see legislation allowing for terminations passed by the Dáil as quickly as possible. Photograph: Collins

 

The last of the Citywest counts was declared at about 4.15pm to a mere handful of pro-repeal campaigners remaining in the hall as the staff dismantled work stations.

Local Fine Gael TD and former tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald said the Irish people had delivered what appeared to be a “strong mandate” to liberalise abortion laws and she would like to see legislation passed “as quickly as possible”.

“I think it’s a good and important day for Irish women. There’s a lot of pent-up feeling about this. There’s 35 years of concern around this,” she said.

“It [the Eighth Amendment] never did what it was intended to do and it hasn’t worked. This is a good day for Irish women.”

Ms Fitzgerald said the result was a “relief” and showed “great faith” in the people who had spoken out about their abortion experiences.

“It must be the toughest thing in the world to speak about a journey to England or a fatal foetal abnormality - the most personal and private thing,” she said.

“Like in marriage equality, people were willing to talk about a most difficult topic. There was a feeling that maybe it wouldn’t be the same that people would be too frightened to speak out.”

“I think what we have to do now is, now that the head is out of the sand, we have to encourage people, to help people, face crisis pregnancies and that way you can actually reduce crisis pregnancies.”

Ms Fitzgerald said she hoped to see legislation allowing for terminations passed by the Dáil “as quickly as possible” and welcomed indications from some TDs who were against repeal that they would facilitate a new law.

“It would appear that there is a very strong mandate now from the Irish people to do this legislation. It’s been a cross-party approach. We should continue that,” she added.

She said Minister for Health Simon Harris had work to do on the legislation. “And as soon as that work can be done I think we should get it through,” she said.