Ireland South recount request withdrawn; Ní Riada votes to be distributed

The request for a full recount of the votes cast in the Ireland South constituency for the European elections has been withdrawn by Sinn Féin.

The political party sought the withdrawal from constituency returning officer Martin Harvey yesterday evening, halting the recount which, it was initially feared, could have potentially taken up to 28 days, though these initial fears were later allayed due to the acquisition of more staff.

The move will see outgoing Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada eliminated from the final part of the election with her 98,379 votes set to be distributed today.

The Ireland South constituency still has three of its five seats vacant, following the election of only two candidates so far: Fine Gael’s Seán Kelly; and Billy Kelleher of Fianna Fáil.

Independents 4 Change candidate Mick Wallace looks set to fill the third seat.

Meanwhile, Fine Gael’s Deirdre Clune and Grace O’Sullivan of the Green Party are currently contesting the fourth seat – with the final fifth ‘Brexit’ seat going to whoever loses that contest.

The ‘Brexit’ seat will not be able to be filled until the official departure of the UK from the EU.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland today, Wednesday, June 5, O’Sullivan has expressed hopes that votes distributed from Ní Riada’s tally will push her over the line for the fourth seat.