Unionist farmer Ian Marshall elected to Irish Seanad

Ian Marshall
Ian Marshall

A unionist farmer from Co Armagh has been elected to Irish Seanad.

Ian Marshall, a former president of the Ulster Farmers’ Union, took the first of two available vacant seats in today’s by-election.

A dairy farmer from Markethill, Mr Marshall hopes his unionist background will bring a different perspective to the upper house of the Oireachtas.

He currently works at Queen’s University Belfast as Business Development Manager and has been an outspoken critic of the UK’s decision to leave the EU.

Earlier this week, Sinn Fein announced its support for Mr Marshall’s candidacy, with party President Mary Lou McDonald saying she was “impressed” by his strong anti-Brexit views.

She said on Wednesday: “I believe Ian will be a strong independent voice in the Seanad; providing an anti-Brexit unionist perspective, which is a welcome addition to the political discourse surrounding the issue in the Oireachtas.”

Mr Marshall was nominated for the seat on the Seanad’s agriculture panel by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.