Ireland's No.2 party calls for reform of parliament before coalition talks

Reuters News
Posted: Feb 29, 2016 12:36 PM

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland's second largest party on Monday called for a cross-party agreement to reform parliament before any talks begin on the formation of a new government following inconclusive elections last week.

Fianna Fail, which secured 24.3 percent of the vote, is the only party with enough seats to form a majority with Prime Minister Enda Kenny's Fine Gael, on 25.5 percent. But senior figures in both parties have expressed opposition to a coalition.

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin said in a statement that all parties should be given two weeks to agree reforms before any talks on a possible new coalition began. He did not broach the possibility of a Fianna Fail-Fine Gael coalition.

The statement called for curbs on the power of the government and greater oversight of new legislation and budgets.

(Reporting by Conor Humphries; Editing by Kevin Liffey)