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General Election voting in Tipperary will go ahead on Saturday despite candidate's death, Minister confirms


Voters in Tipperary will go to the polls on Saturday despite the death of a candidate, it has been confirmed.

It was unclear whether the electorate in the county would be turning out for the General Election on February 8 after Independent hopeful Marese Skehan died on Monday afternoon.

Ms Skehan, who was one of 14 candidates, was found dead at her home.

The Electoral Act allows for voting to be postponed in a constituency in the event of the death of a candidate.



Marese Skehan

And despite it being reported Tipperary voters would have to wait at least three weeks to vote, Minister Eoghan Murphy has ruled that the election will be held this weekend in all constituencies.

A statement said: “Mr Eoghan Murphy, Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government made a special difficulty order this evening (5 February, 2020) in respect of the general election 2020. The making of the special difficulty order means that the election in Tipperary will now proceed on the same day as all other constituencies – on 8 February 2020.

“The advice of the Attorney General was sought and, following consideration of that advice, the Minister is satisfied that this order is necessary to address a special difficulty that occurred this week in relation to the holding of an election in the constituency of Tipperary. 



Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy

“The difficulty relates to the impossibility of completing a fresh election in that constituency in accordance with section 62 of the Electoral Act 1992 and within the 30 day time limit set out in article 16.3.2 of the Constitution, following the death of a candidate (Ms Marese Skehan).

“The Minister wishes to stress that all functions performed and acts done by the Returning Officer for Tipperary under the Electoral Act 1992, prior to making this special difficulty order, were carried out in accordance with the law.

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General Election 2020

“The order modifies the law so that those acts are set aside and the Returning Officer can proceed to hold the poll on Saturday 8 February.

“Minister Murphy expresses his sincere sympathies to the family and friends of Marese Skehan on her very sad passing.”



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