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Programme to detail Brian Lenihan's 17-hour days while battling illness
A special edition of the Cloch Le Carn series on RTÉ tonight will look back at Lenihan’s life in politics and battles both personal and economic.

A PROGRAMME TO be aired tonight will shed new light on Brian Lenihan’s final days as it is revealed he worked long hours during his 18-month battle with cancer as Ireland was plunged into an economic crisis.

In the RTÉ programme Cloch Le Carn to be aired tonight, family and friends of the late Minister for Finance will look back on Lenihan’s life and shed new light on his battle with cancer which involved spells of radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

His aunt and former government minister Mary O’Rourke reveals how he would work from 7am until as late as midnight, the Irish Examiner reports today. He also contemplated giving up his ministerial role when he was told of his illness but decided to persevere.

Lenihan died in June of this year. He was 52.

The programme will take note of the fact that Lenihan, a TD for Dublin West, was respected on all sides of Leinster House having been the first Fianna Fáil member to be invited to deliver the oration at the annual Michael Collins commemoration at Béal na Bláth, a traditional Fine Gael stronghold.

It will also note the various struggles he faced while Minister for Finance, declaring in 2009 that the worst was over and that “we have turned the corner” when in fact there was much worse to come in the form of an EU/IMF bailout sought less than a year later.

The programme will also detail Lenihan’s anger at the way in which news of his illness was broken to the country in December 2009 – first revealed by TV3, against his and his family’s wishes.

As well as O’Rourke, other contributors will include political commentator and his close friend Noel Whelan, former cabinet colleague Mary Hanafin, ex-government press secretary Eoghan Ó Neachtain and political correspondent Rónán Ó Domhnaill.

Clock Le Carn will air on RTÉ One tonight at 8.35pm

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