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Dragon's Den star to moderate Leo and Simon in Fine Gael hustings

Duffy said he will act as “an independent, objective moderator”.

Dragon's Den Gavin Duffy
Dragon's Den Gavin Duffy
Image: Sam Boal

GAVIN DUFFY IS best known for investing in new business ideas in RTÉ’s Dragon’s Den – but he’s taking up a new role for the next couple of days.

The communications expert is tasked with keeping Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney in check during the four Fine Gael Leadership Election debates.

The nationwide debates, or hustings, begin tomorrow, with the first taking place at the Red Cow Hotel in Dublin.

“I am pleased to have been appointed convener, to act as an independent, objective moderator,” said Duffy.

“I can honestly say the party is fielding two excellent candidates. My role is, through the questions submitted by members, to help inform the electorate for the next Leader of Fine Gael of the vision, policies and priorities of each candidate,” he added.

He commended the party for the “open and transparent manner” in which the election of the leader was being conducted.

90306826_90306826 Enda Kenny meets with businessman Gavin Duffy at a jobs launch. Source: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

How will the hustings work?

The hustings are for Fine Gael members only.

Following an introduction from the chairman and the convener, both candidates will deliver a ten-minute opening speech.

Each candidate is afforded sufficient and equal time to detail their qualifications, experience and ambitions for the party and the country.

The two ministers will alternate the order in which they speak over the course of the four hustings.

A question and answer session will then be convened by Duffy, followed by an open forum to allow for questions from Fine Gael members.

The dates and locations of the regional hustings are as follows:

  • Thursday, May 25: Red Cow Hotel, Dublin, 8pm
  • Friday, May 26: Barrow Centre, IT Carlow, 8pm
  • Saturday, May 27: Shearwater Hotel, Ballinasloe, Co Galway, 8pm
  • Sunday, May 28: Clayton Hotel Silver Springs, Cork, 8pm

Each event will be live streamed on the Fine Gael Facebook page and on the Party website.

Read: Leo Varadkar says Sinn Féin is “the greatest threat to our democracy”>

Taoiseach on FitzPatrick case collapse: ‘The taxpayer must pick up the tab’>

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