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The 9 at 9 New MEPS, complaints at the Rotunda and a Labour-SocDem merger?



Here’s all the news that you need to know as you start your day.

1. Five MEPS

In the European elections, we now have five MEPs elected, following the completion of the vote in Dublin.

Fianna Fáil’s Barry Andrews, Fine Gael’s Regina Doherty, Sinn Féin’s Lynn Boylan and Labour’s Aodhán Ó Ríordáin all crossed the line after the counting finished this evening.

2. Complaint refused

The Rotunda Hospital’s refusal to investigate a complaint made by a couple over the death of their newborn baby because it was made outside of a 12 month window is amongst the cases flagged in the annual report from the Ombudsman for Irish public services.

3. Joining forces

Newly elected Dublin MEP Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has said it is time for Labour and the Social Democrats to “join forces” and “stop pretending that there’s any difference” between them. 

4. Mummies

Gardaí have launched an investigation into a fire in the crypt of St Michan’s Church in Dublin, in which mummified remains have been destroyed. 

The incident took place this afternoon at 4.30 pm, and the vicar of the church said that the remains were destroyed during efforts to put the blaze out.

5. Israel-Lebanon conflict

An Israeli strike on southern Lebanon killed a senior Hezbollah commander yesterday, the militant group said.

It named the commander as Sami Abdallah, also known as Abu Taleb, born in 1969, in a statement reporting his death.

6. Water quality

The Environmental Protection Agency has said that there are no signs of improvement in Ireland’s water quality and more action is needed in a new indicators report. 

 The water quality in our lakes, estuaries and groundwaters did not improve in 2023, and the small improvements that were recorded were offset by declines elsewhere due to nutrient pollution caused by agriculture and wastewater.

7. RTÉ Board

The new chair of the RTÉ board is to tell politicians sitting on the Oireachtas media committee that the broadcaster needs a “sufficient, predictable, and independent” funding framework. 

Terence O’Rourke took up the position following the resignation of Siún Ní Raghallaigh amid a public fall-out with Media Minister Catherine Martin. 

8. Legacy investigation

Three men were arrested this morning as part of an investigation into the murder of a PSNI constable in 1975. Two were arrested in the REpublic and another in Northern Ireland.

9. Voices

Opinion polls are one of the main talking points of the recent local and European Parliament elections. Tánaiste Micheál Martin and Jack Chambers, Fianna Fáil Director of Elections, publicly criticised pollsters using online panels.

Fianna Fáil has good reason to be frustrated. General election polls have significantly underestimated support for Fianna Fáil and vastly exaggerated support for Sinn Féin. For them, this creates a mistaken media narrative about popular support for Sinn Féin.

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