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Dáil Éireann Debate, Wednesday - 19 January 2022

Wednesday, 19 January 2022

Ceisteanna (640)

Catherine Murphy

Ceist:

640. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the number of instances historically to date in 2022 in which consideration was given to a request by an Irish citizen to accept a title of nobility or honour in accordance with Article 40.2.2 of Bunreacht na hÉireann by date of consideration, name of requestor, title or honour concerned and the decision by the Government to approve or not to approve in tabular form; the legislative instrument which ensures the practical application of Article 40.2.2; if he will provide a schedule of persons who have made requests over this time period; if he will further indicate those that were refused and those that were approved; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1000/22]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Foreign)

The reference in Article 40.2.2 of the Constitution to "title of nobility or of honour" has been interpreted, in accordance with advice from the Attorney General, as referring to honours conferred by or on behalf of a sovereign authority, the recipients of which become entitled, by the law or custom of the foreign State in question, to use prefixes to their names such as “Sir”, “Dame”, “Lord” or "Marquis”.

It is these types of award which are considered by Government. The table below lists instances over the past thirty years where the Government considered such awards. In the cases of awards conferred by the UK, the recipients of the awards in each instance are dual Irish-British citizens.

Awards which provide for the use of letters or marks of distinction after one's name; medals; ribbons; or academic honours are not regarded as conferring a title of nobility or of honour in this context.

In relation to the fourth, twelfth and thirteenth instances summarised below, the honours in question were extended to the Irish citizens concerned before the conferral was brought to the attention of the Government. No facility exists for retrospective approval. My Department regularly informs the authorities of countries concerned that the prior approval of the Government should be sought in instances where substantive awards are to be conferred on an Irish citizen.

It is noted that rights, privileges or dignities deriving from the award of a title of nobility or honour subsist solely within the jurisdiction conferring it and any other jurisdiction that may recognise rights, privileges or dignities as flowing from it. Under Irish law, such a title has no significance in terms of conferring rights, entitlements or dignities.

 

Date of Consideration

Country Conferring the Award

Title of Award

Government Decision

1.

29/12/2000

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

2.

11/07/2001

Malaysia

Darhaj Panglima Jasa Negara, PJN, Kerhormat

Approved

3.

08/06/2005

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

4.

01/ 2006

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

No decision (no facility exists for retrospective approval)

5.

12/06/2008

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

6.

07/05/2013

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

7.

30/12/2013

UK

Damehood (Commander of the Order)

Approved

8.

10/06/2014

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

9.

10/06/2014

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

10.

09/06/2015

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

11.

03/11/2015

Grenada

Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of the Nation

Approved

12.

03/11/2015

Antigua and Barbuda

Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of the Nation

No decision (no facility exists for retrospective approval)

13.

03/11/2015

Antigua and Barbuda

Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of the Nation

No decision (no facility exists for retrospective approval)

14.

17/05/2016

UK

Knighthood (Knight Bachelor)

Approved

Barr
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