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Thursday 7 December 2023 Dublin: 10°C

The 5 at 5 5 minutes, 5 stories, 5 o’clock…

EVERY WEEKDAY EVENING, brings you five things you need to know before you head out the door…

1. #REDUNDANCIES: Companies under financial pressure have laid staff off just before Christmas – because waiting until 2012 would mean they could only recoup a fraction of their redundancy costs from the government. Retail Excellence Ireland made the claim as it unveiled stats showing that retail sales are up in December for the first time in 46 months.

2. #GARDA STATIONS: The Office of Public Works has spent over €65,000 on refurbishment work on four Garda stations which will be shut in the coming months, has learned. €65,788 has been spent on works in Roscommon, Cork and Monaghan – even though those stations won’t be open this time next year as part of Budget cutbacks.

3. #QUINN HEALTHCARE: 334 jobs at Quinn Healthcare have been secured after the company concluded talks to be sold to a Swiss reinsurance group. The sale, for an undisclosed amount, will ensure that all 334 jobs at Little Island in Co Cork will be secured – and that the cover of its customers will not be interrupted.

4. #AID: The Irish government has pledged an additional €200,000 in charity donations to support humanitarian assistance in South Sudan. The funding, being provided to GOAL, is to assist displaced persons who are fleeing the ongoing violence in neighbouring Sudan. Over 100,000 peopel are expected to flee Sudan as unrest continues.

5. #SPACE BALLS: Authorities in Namibia are trying to figure out the origin of a mysterious 14″ metallic sphere which appears to have fallen from space. The ‘space ball’ fell to Earth last month, leaving a crater almost four metres wide – but authorities have no idea where it came from. Their best guess is that it fell from a satellite.