National Youth Council calls for a Friday election date

The group says a Thursday election would prevent many young people from casting their vote

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The National Youth Council is calling on the Government to ensure the general election takes place on a Friday, amid claims that a Thursday election is under consideration.

The NYCI says there are up to 460,000 young people entitled to vote.

The organisation says holding it on a Friday would facilitate those away from home at college, training, or work, to return home to vote.

It is rumoured Fine Gael would prefer general election polling on Thursday 25th February so as not to clash with the Six Nations.

Ian Power, President of the National Youth Council of Ireland, said, “excellent work was done in 2015, particularly leading up to the marriage equality referendum - and so far in 2016 - to get thousands of young people registered. A Thursday election would undermine this and prevent many from casting their vote.

“For the 2011 general election, the youth voter turnout was 62%, up 12% on 2002 levels. If we want to maintain and enhance youth turnout, we need to support it through Friday or weekend elections,” Mr Power added.

Meanwhile, a Fine Gael Minister has moved to deny speculation about in-fighting between his party and Labour over the date of the election.

Paschal Donohoe says the election date is a matter for the Taoiseach - and that we will know polling day very soon.

He added that Fine Gael and Labour "will maintain [their] good working relationship up until the final moments of this Government":

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