Three women die violently in week prison body admits Mountjoy crisis

Saturday/Sunday

Saturday/Sunday

THREE women died in violent circumstances during the week. Late on Sunday evening, Mr Michael Halligan (35), of no fixed abode, was charged at a special sitting of the Dublin District Court with the murder of Mrs Martina Halligan (35) earlier that day.

The UVF was reported to be on the verge of calling off it's ceasefire after a bomb alert in Dublin Airport, despite claims to the contrary by other loyalists. The organisation had held a series of "consultative" meetings for members in the previous weeks, and they decided that loyalists had gained little or nothing from holding to their ceasefire after the IRA renewed its campaign of violence.

The Government decided to set up a Dublin Docklands Development Authority to rejuvenate the city's redundant port area. But the whole area is unlikely to be designated for tax incentive purposes.

Monday

The Supreme Court is believed to be divided on the validity of the recent divorce referendum.

Two judges are likely to support the petition by the chairman of the Anti Divorce Campaign, the former senator, Mr Des Hanafin, challenging the outcome of the referendum.

Two other judges are expected to reject the petition, leaving the newest judge in the Supreme Court, Mr Justice Barrington, with the deciding vote.

An English woman living in Co Laois was found dead in her home. Gardai began a murder hunt after the body of Mrs Patti Bainbridge was found in the Old Rectory at Coolrain, near Mountrath. Later in the week her son, Nigel, was charged with her murder.

The Labour Court told the Elan Corporation it should recognise SIPTU. The pharmaceutical giant, which employs 750 people at its Athlone plant and announced pretax profits of £56.8 million last week, told the court US investors would withdraw if it had to recognise a union.

Tuesday

Mountjoy Prison in Dublin is facing "certain disaster," according, to the jail's own visiting committee. Overcrowding is at crisis levels, the drugs problem has reached "epidemic proportions" and an "ad hoc, uncoordinated" medical service is denying prisoners their medical rights, the committee's 1995 report says.

With property prices rising rapidly, the residential property tax is emerging as an issue which could damage the Government in the next election.

Fine Gael TDs have raised the issue at internal meetings and their disquiet is believed to be "shared by some Ministers. Meanwhile, the PDs have launched a nationwide campaign to repeal the tax.

A failed Dublin insurance broker, Mark Synnott, was sentenced to four years and three months in jail in the first successful prosecution for "fraudulent trading" in the history of the State.

But investors - many of them elderly people who had invested their life savings with Synnott - have been told they cannot expect to get back any of the £2.3 million given to the broker.

Wednesday

A 49 year old unemployed blocklayer, Mr Patrick Joseph Collins, was charged at Abbeyfeale court in Co Limerick with the manslaughter of his wife on Tuesday.

Mrs Angela Collins (49) came originally from Ennis, Co Clare.

Meanwhile, gardai in Dublin said they were not looking for anyone in connection with the death of Ms Tracey Elliott (19) of Killester on Monday. Ms Elliott died of head injuries after falling 30 feet from the roof of a local school.

A group of Dublin men claimed an £11 million win in last Saturday's lottery draw in Britain. The men had been celebrating with friends and relatives since the weekend, but had not produced the ticket to claim the money.

The State is to provide the poorest children with school breakfasts and cut their class sizes to 15 as of a new approach to tackling educational disadvantage.

The Minister for Education, Ms Breathnach, plans to concentrate extra funding on 25 urban schools and 25 clusters of rural schools. But her approach was criticised by the INTO, which said it would "devastate" rural communities.

Thursday

The Taoiseach, Mr Bruton, welcomed the British government's decision to allow the gravely ill IRA prisoner, Patrick Kelly, to be transferred from prison in the North to Portlaoise jail.

But the transfer of Kelly, who is suffering from skin cancer, is not expected to influence the IRA in restoring its ceasefire.

The report on abuse at Madonna House was published, minus two chapters which were withheld on the advice of the Attorney General "because of the need to protect the identities of, certain parties and to avoid interference with ongoing investigations and legal proceedings".

The joint Oireachtas Committee on the Family is now expected to try to publish the missing chapters under cover of Dail privilege.