Michael Staines
Michael Staines

06.57 14 Feb 2020


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Sinn Féin is accusing Fianna Fáil of ignoring the wishes of the electorate as the formation of the next government remains up in the air.

Yesterday, Micheál Martin’s party joined Fine Gael in saying it would work with anyone except Sinn Féin.

Based on the numbers as they currently stand, that will likely shut Mary Lou McDonald's party out – with a grand coalition or new minority government led by Fianna Fáil potentially on the cards.

Sinn Féin has called Fianna Fáil’s stance “appalling” and “untenable.”

***

Controls against the coronavirus COVID-19 are being stepped up in China as the death toll rose further overnight.

The city of Huanggang – near the epicentre of the outbreak – is sealing housing blocks and only allowing essential vehicles on roads.

Nearly 1,500 people have now died from the virus and almost 65,000 people are infected.

The HSE yesterday said that it is likely we will see a case in Ireland, but there have been no confirmed cases so far.

***

Homebuilders are warning that they won't be able to play their part in solving the housing crisis unless a specific set of challenges are tackled.

The Irish Homebuilders Association has said it is vital the next government understands the challenges of housing.

The association will be hosting a series of road-shows to get the message out about the hurdles they want to overcome.

It said increasing construction costs, affordability, increasing regulations and planning costs are limiting the level of housing output.

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Household and catering staff at St Patrick's Mental Health Services in Dublin City Centre have begun an indefinite strike.

The strike is part of a dispute over the HSE's decision to outsource household and catering services at the hospital.

Trade union SIPTU said the strike will continue until management engages with the union.

Sinn Féin health spokesperson Louise O’Reilly is calling on all sides to enter talks to end the dispute.

***

Forecasters are warning people to expect flooding when Storm Dennis arrives this weekend.

Met Éireann will issue weather warnings later today, which will be in place from Saturday to Monday.

It said flooding is likely and very strong winds may also cause disruption.


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Builders COVDI-19 Coronavirus Fianna Fáil Fine Gael Government Housing Sinn Fein

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