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Irish university cancels student visit to Belgium due to GMIT students deaths

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Maynooth University has cancelled a student visit to Belgium after a former director of a language school there was convicted in relation to a fire in which two GMIT students died.
Dace Zarina from Longford and Sara Gibadlo from Oranmore died in a fire at a house in the university town of Leuven in January 2014.

Last year, a former director of the Leuven-based institute they were attending at the time, was jailed for a year after being branded a ‘slum landlord’ by prosecutors.
Both Malachy Vallely and the institute were convicted of fire safety breaches.
Following the fire and subsequent court convictions, a planned trip involving 30 students from the Maynooth centre for European and Eurasian Studies has been called off.
According to the Irish Times, Maynooth University says the trip was cancelled due to ‘concerns over governance’ at the Belgian institute.

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City Council meeting suspended after Mayor compared to Mussolini

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – This week’s meeting of Galway City Council was briefly suspended after the Mayor of Galway was compared to Mussolini.

A row broke out as councillors discussed the minutes of a previous meeting held in December.

A dispute arose between the chair, Mayor of Galway Councillor Collette Connolly, and Councillor Alan Cheevers, after Councillor Cheevers attempted to make a point centered on the minutes of the December meeting.

Mayor Connolly questioned the relevance of the contribution being made and ruled clarification of the minutes was not the correct forum for the statement being made.

However Councillor Cheevers insisted that he be allowed to make his point, leading to a back and forth exchange that led to Mayor Connolly ask that her ruling as chair be respected.

She said the meeting was time limited with a very busy agenda – but noted a large amount of time was being spent on the minutes of the December meeting and they had to move on.

Councillor Cheevers then accused her of running the meeting like Mussolini – a statement which saw Mayor Connolly abruptly suspend the meeting.

Once proceedings resumed, a member of staff reminded all present of the necessity to respect the rulings of the chair.

It was added that Councillors right to be heard could be revoked if they failed to do so – or they could be asked to leave the meeting.

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8,039 new cases of COVID-19

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From the Galway Bay FM newsroom:

A further 8,039 COVID-19 cases have been confirmed by the Department of Health.

3,692 are PCR while a further 4,347 positive antigen tests have been registered through the HSE portal.

885 people are in hospital with the virus – 76 of them are in ICU.

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Women in Galway city encouraged to highlight areas along their daily walk where they don’t feel safe

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From Galway Bay FM newsroom- Women across Galway city are being encouraged to highlight areas along their daily walk where they don’t feel safe, that can be improved by the local authority.

City Councillor Owen Hanley says he has been contacted by numerous people who have flagged areas across the city which women in particular felt weren’t safe enough.

Issues highlighted include hedges that are too high, blind spots or lights which are not in operation.

Councillor Hanley says he is planning to bring such issues to the attention of Galway City Council,who can do more to ensure walkers feel safe.

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