TG4 will play host to a three way political debate on Wednesday, February 16th during which Irish party leaders in contention for the post of Taoiseach will take part in a three way debate as Gaeilge.
Enda Kenny, Éamon Gilmore and Micheál Martin have all confirmed their availability to meet in a debate moderated by Nuacht TG4's chief newscaster Eimear Ní Chonaola that will air at 7pm (with a repeat broadcast later that night at 10.30pm). The TG4 debate will look to cover all the main issues – the Irish economy, employment, the public finances, political reform, emigration, health with the Fine Gael, Labour and Fianna Fáil leaders all explaining their various (and often conflicting) policies.
The TG4 Leaders' Debate as Gaeilge will be the first of its kind and will air with on-screen English language subtitles. TG4 Ardstiúrthóir, Pól Ó Gallchóir welcomed the leaders' confirmation of their willingness to participate: "We are proud to host this first ever television Leaders' Debate as Gaeilge as a key part of our overall General Coverage," he commented. "And as an important contribution to the overall public discourse during the election campaign. It is also a significant boost for the profile of the language and we commend the leaders for their leadership in this regard."
The Irish language debate follows on from earlier debates already hosted by Irish broadcasters TV3 and RTÉ. Fianna Fáil leader, Mícheál Martin and Labour Party leader, Eamon Gilmore took part in TV3’s broadcasted election debate on February 8th whilst RTÉ’s ‘Frontline’ staged a five-way debate on Monday, February 14th featuring Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny, Micheal Martin of Fianna Fail, Labour's Eamon Gilmore, Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams and John Gormley of the Greens faced questions from a live studio audience.
An Díospóireacht na gCeannairí will broadcast on Wednesday, February 16th at 7:00pm on TG4.