EVERY MORNING, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you need to know as you kick off your day.
1. #MISSING: Gardaí are this morning appealing for information about missing person William Horgan, 59, who has been missing from his home in Cork City since 12 January. He is described as approximately 5′ 7″ in height, medium build, with long grey hair and a grey beard.
2. #BOSTON: An Irish nanny in Boston has been charged with assaulting the one-year-old child she was caring for, who subsequently died. The child was found with broken bones and a severe head injury. 34-year-old Aisling McCarthy Brady from Cavan is being held on €500,000 cash bail.
3. #WATER CHARGES: The Seanad will begin debating the legislation behind water charges today which would give legal creation to the new Irish Water Body. The legislation will provide the body with the power to install water meters in all domestic properties and to levy charges for water use.
4. #SUICIDE: Ireland has the highest rate of suicide among young males in the European Union, according to a report published today. The research also found that suicide now ranks as a major cause of death among young males in both the Republic and Northern Ireland, and that the recent spike in suicide rates clashed with the economic downturn and the increase in unemployment.
5. #BILL GATES: Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore is meeting with Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates this morning to discuss development aid priorities for Ireland’s EU Presidency. Gilmore said he welcomed the prominence Gates was giving to development issues which he said would be central to Ireland’s foreign policy.
6. #PRISONS: Minister Alan Shatter has said that prison rules have now been amended to support prisoner complaints of serious ill treatment, use of excessive force, racial discrimination, intimation or threats. The changes to the rules provide that complaints will be now examined by investigators from outside the Prison Service to ensure an impartial investigation.
7. #ANGLO: Former Anglo Irish Bank chairman Seán Fitzpatrick is due in court this morning along with two other directors of the defunct bank. The three former bankers each face 16 charges under company law of providing unlawful financial assistance to the bankrupt businessman Seán Quinn’s five children and his wife Patricia as well as 10 other people in July 2008.
8. #BRITAIN: David Cameron is giving a speech in London this morning where it is expected he will promise to hold a referendum giving people a choice on whether or not to stay in the European Union. If his party wins an outright victory in the election, he wants to hold a referendum before the end of 2017.
9. #NATURAL BORN KILLER: A campaign to eradicate New Zealand’s cats in order to protect native wildlife has been launched by a businessman turned philanthropist. The man has cited research saying the average cat kills at least 13 native birds or animals each year and said that if the country was serious about conservation “then we must acknowledge that we are harbouring a natural born killer”.