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Seanad Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 5 Apr 2022

Vol. 284 No. 4

Election of Member

I have to announce that the following Member has been elected to fill the casual vacancy in the membership of the Seanad to which a resolution of Seanad Éireann on 10 November 2021 has reference:

University of Dublin Panel: Tom Clonan.

I invite Senator Tom Clonan to enter the Chamber for which he struggled so long and hard to get elected to.

Senator Tom Clonan was introduced to the Cathaoirleach and then took his seat.

I welcome the Senator to the House, and also welcome his family and supporters. I welcome his wife, Aideen, and Darach, Eoghan, Ailbhe and Rossa. Family members and supporters have helped him on this long campaign and journey. The family dog, Leahy, played a prominent role in the campaign as well. Tom is well known to many of us through his campaigning as a security expert in his great work over 20 years championing the issues in our security forces which had to be exposed. Often, somebody who champions those causes is vilified, but ultimately Tom has been proven correct and has been honoured by the Defence Forces and recognised for his work on making sure that our Defence Forces are open to everybody and are safe for everyone to be a member of. He is also well known as a campaigner on behalf of his son Eoghan and all persons with disabilities, and making sure that we have an Ireland in which everybody is treated equally, regardless of his or her circumstances. We look forward to working with Tom in the House. Senator David Norris came in specially today. I will call on the father of the House after I call on the Deputy Leader. Tom can then respond to Senator Norris.