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Councillors ratify nomination of Dr Tony Holohan for the honorary freedom of the city of Dublin

The new Lord Mayor Hazel Chu proposed the award for Dr Holohan, who stepped aside from his role last week.

File photo. Dr Tony Holohan led the briefings providing updates on the virus.
File photo. Dr Tony Holohan led the briefings providing updates on the virus.
Image: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

COUNCILLORS IN DUBLIN city have this evening ratified the nomination of Dr Tony Holohan for the honorary freedom of the city of Dublin.

Proposed by the new Lord Mayor Hazel Chu, the award is said to “acknowledge the contribution of recipients to the life of Ireland’s capital”. 

Dr Holohan held the senior role within the Department of Health for a number of years, and chaired the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) from the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

It is NPHET’s guidance to the government that guided the introduction of restrictions aimed at stopping the spread of Covid-19 in Ireland. In recent weeks, the country has begun to re-open given the low numbers of transmission of the virus in the community. 

Last week, Dr Holohan said he would be stepping back from the role for family reasons and Dr Ronan Glynn has taken on the role of acting chief medical officer.

He has been the public face of the response to the virus through the daily televised updates throughout March, April, May and into June. 

Lord Mayor Chu said: “I am honoured to propose Dr. Tony Holohan, as the leader of the Covid response team, for Dublin City’s highest award, the honorary freedom of the city of Dublin.

The position he holds represents all front line workers and all the work they do.  He has been a constant presence in our lives during Covid-19 and his calm manner in imparting advice gave reassurance to us all.

He will be the 83rd person to be conferred with the honorary freedom of the city, following the likes of John F Kennedy, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa and most recently Dublin GAA manager Jim Gavin. 

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Holders of the ancient privilege of freedom of the city were given the right to bring goods into Dublin through the city gates without paying customs duties, the right to pasture sheep on common ground within the city boundaries and the right to vote in municipal and parliamentary elections.

The honorary freedom of Dublin city will be conferred to Dr Holohan at a later date. 

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Sean Murray

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