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Ireland's Ombudsman may be on track to take over as European Ombudsman

After the first round of voting yesterday, Emily O’Reilly was tied at the top with Dutch politician Ria Oomen-Ruijten.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

IRELAND’S OMBUDSMAN EMILY O’Reilly could be on track to winning the European Ombudsman position after a successful round of voting yesterday.

O’Reilly received 203 votes in the first round of the election and tied at the top with Dutch politician Ria Oomen-Ruijten with both receiving almost 100 more votes than any of the other candidates.

A second round of voting will take place at 10.30 this morning and if necessary a third round will also take place immediately after.

Speaking to Karen Coleman of radioep.ie after the vote yesterday, O’Reilly said she was “absolutely delighted” with the result.

“I was hoping to emerge as the strongest of the non-MEP candidates and I did that, but tying with candidate from the biggest political grouping is fantastic,” she said.

I suppose the ten years of being a national ombudsman really stood to me then because I knew this area, I knew what I was talking about and also because I’ve had a lot of exposure to the European experience through the network of ombudsmen, indeed through the European ombudsman office itself, so over time I got more confident and it’s all come together today.

O’Reilly said she will now “have the torture of waiting” for the result today but the winner will be announced either way later this morning.

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