EVERY MORNING, TheJournal.ie brings you the nine things you need to know as you kick off your day…
1. #POWER CUTS: Hundreds of homes are without electricity this morning as heavy gusts knocked out power lines overnight. ESB Networks said it is working to fix the faults as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, Gardaí have urged caution on the country’s roads this morning due to fallen trees and debris.
2. #ROADS: There was devastating news for one Cork family this morning as a 32-year-old woman died in a car crash at Ballinneen overnight. She was the front-seat passenger of the vehicle.
3. #RIP: A number of politicians have spoken out this morning about the abuse written online about Shane McEntee in the two weeks before he died by suicide. Fine Gael TDs spoke with both the Sunday Independent and Sunday Times about how upset the 56-year-old was about the “public vitriol” that followed his comments about the respite care grant cut. The junior minister will be laid to rest after a funeral mass in his native Meath tomorrow.
4. #GANG RAPE: The victim of a vicious gang-rape has recounted her ordeal to police, on the same day as authorities banned related demonstrations in Delhi. The Hindustan Times reports that the 23-year-old student told detectives that she was raped and physically abused by six men on an off-duty bus.
5. #NEW PARTY? A MillwardBrown/Sunday Independent poll has shown that 50 per cent of voters feel there is a need for a new political party in Ireland.
6. #PROPERTY: The Sunday Business Post reports that 185 properties were sold for more than €1 million this year, a jump of 29 on 2011 figures. And the actual average spend for the homes was €1.99 million.
7. #DEBT DEAL: Enda Kenny told a number of reporters, including Stephen O’Brien of the Sunday Times, that there is a June deadline for EU leaders to indicate to international markets how they will write-down Ireland’s massive bank debt.
8. #EGYPT: Amid claims of fraud by Opposition parties, the ruling Islamists in Egypt said the majority of voters had backed a controversial constitution in a two-round referendum
9. #STRICTLY: BBC’s feel-good family show Strictly Come Dancing annihilated the competition in the annual winter Saturday-night television ratings battle, wiping the floor with the jaded X Factor in recent weeks. And the presence of Olympic star Louis Smith could well have been one of the contributing factors. The silver medallist at London was named this year’s champion last night, stating he can “finally say I won something in the year 2012″. His showdance with partner Flavia Cacace earned him a perfect score: