Leading Irish channel TG4 have hit a snag in their attempts to arrange a presidential tv debate after only one candidate was revealed to be fluent in Irish.
Of the seven candidates only Labour`s Michael D Higgins admitted that he would have no problem in partaking in the debate.
Two candidates, Sean Gallagher and Mary Davis admitted to having a leaving cert standard of the language while Dana Rosemary Scallon has some “basic Irish”.
David Norris admitted to being comfortable with the language but not fluent while Gay Mitchell and Martin McGuinness claimed they are brushing up on their Irish.
TG4 is trying to plot away around the language barrier in an attempt to host a debate that would bring thousands of viewers to the channel.
While there is no requirement for the Irish president to speak the language, it would look particularly poor especially on an international basis.