Eamon Ryan will not be flying home from Dubai to vote in tomorrow’s Dáil motion of no confidence in the Justice Minister.
The Green Party leader was facing the prospect of flying home from the COP28 summit to vote on the crunch motion before flying back out again.
The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar had admitted that the situation was “not ideal” – but insisted Minister Ryan had no choice as ‘pairing arrangements’ are generally only available to people who are incapacitated or sick when it comes to a confidence vote.
This morning, however, a spokesperson for Minister Ryan confirmed that he had been offered a pairing by Social Democrats environment spokesperson Jennifer Whitmore.
They said he had "gratefully" accepted the offer which allows him to remain at COP28.
“[Minister Ryan] has been in contact with both the Taoiseach and the Tánaiste, who have supported the arrangement,” said the spokesperson.
“They have agreed that this occasion could be seen as an exception to the normal pairing arrangements for such motions.
“Minister Ryan said that he has full confidence in Justice Minister Helen McEntee and in the coalition Government.”
A pairing arrangement is an agreement between the Government and the opposition which sees a representative from the opposition agreeing to abstain when a Government representative is not available to vote.
The spokesperson said Minister Ryan was representing Ireland at the summit to push for “greater investment in, and access to, renewable energy, particularly for the developing world”.
They said he would also “advocate for agreement on a meaningful plan for the phase-out of fossil fuels”.
Sinn Féin last week tabled the motion of no confidence in Justice Minister Helen McEntee, claiming she had not been “not listening” following the Dublin riots.
Fine Gael has accused Sinn Féin of not acting in a responsible manner since the riots took place.
Sinn Féin has insisted the vote is necessary because many people in Ireland no longer feel safe.