High Court refuses permission for challenges to Eighth Amendment result

There is no automatic right for such challenges to be heard

High Court refuses permission for challenges to Eighth Amendment result

Photo: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie

The High Court has refused to grant permission for two separate applicants to challenge the outcome of the abortion referendum.

One of them has already indicated his intention to appeal the decision.

On May 25th, almost 1.5 million people voted to repeal the Eighth amendment.

After the landslide result, two people applied to the President of the High Court for permission to challenge the outcome.

Charles Byrne, a musician from Drogheda, made a series of complaints against the Referendum Commission and accused it of failing to correctly convey the “nature and breadth” of the proposal and the legal effect of a 'Yes' vote.

He also raised concerns about some of the media coverage and claimed hundreds of students in NUIG weren't properly registered to vote.

Meanwhile, Joanna Jordan from Upper Glenageary Road in Dún Laoghaire claimed thousands of young Irish citizens were paid to return to vote.

In 2012, she lost a similar challenge to the Children’s Referendum.

There is not an automatic right to have such challenges heard in the High Court.

Today, Mr Justice Peter Kelly refused both applicants because he could not find any prima facie evidence that the matters raised were likely to have had a material effect on the outcome of the vote.

However, the result will not be formalised for at least another week to allow Mr Byrne time to seek leave to appeal today’s decision.