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Former minister and Traveller rights activist among Seanad nominees

The Taoiseach’s 11 nominees will be formally voted in as Senators on Monday

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Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty (Steve Humphreys/PA)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty (Steve Humphreys/PA)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty (Steve Humphreys/PA)

Taoiseach Micheal Martin has announced his 11 nominations to the Seanad – the upper house of the Irish parliament.

Former Social Protection Minister Regina Doherty and Traveller rights activist Eileen Flynn are among the Taoiseach’s nominees.

Ms Doherty lost her seat as a TD in February’s election.

Ms Flynn will becomes the first woman from the Traveller community to become a member of the Irish parliament.

They will be formally elected at a special sitting of the Seanad in Dublin on Monday when they will pass essential legislation including the Offence Against the State Act.

Citizenship campaigner Emma DeSouza had been tipped for a nomination as a representative from Northern Ireland was previously selected but she lost out.

The list of nominees contains a record amount of women.

Fianna Fail nominees include councillors Mary Fitzpatrick and Erin McGreehan, former Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee, and former TD Timmy Dooley.

Fine Gael nominees include former minister Ms Doherty and councillors Aisling Dolan, Emer Currie and Mary Seery Kearney.

Green Party nominees include councillors Vincent P Martin and Roisin Garvey.

Mr Martin is the brother of the Green Party’s deputy leader Catherine Martin.

PA