An appeal by Gemma O’Doherty and John Waters to allow them to challenge the constitutionality of laws introduced in response to the Covid-19 pandemic has been dismissed by a three-judge Court of Appeal, comprised of the President of the Court of Appeal Mr Justice George Birmingham, Ms Justice John Edwards and Ms Justice Caroline Costello.
A heavy Garda presence monitoring an End the Lockdown protest in support of an appeal by Gemma O’Doherty and John Waters against lockdown measures.
The Four Courts, Dublin.
Gemma O’Doherty carrying a copy of the Constitution of Ireland, and John Waters arrive to seek appeal to have their case against Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and the Attorney General to end Ireland’s lockdown measures heard before the courts.
Gemma O’Doherty and John Waters with their supporters, arriving outside the Four Courts before they filed papers in their ongoing effort to obtain a High Court hearing into the constitutionality of laws introduced in response to the rona.
High Court today was told of their intention to appeal Mr Justice Charles Meenan’s decision as the court heard arguments as to who should pay the legal costs of their action against the State and the Minister for Health.
The Dáil, the Seanad and the Ceann Comhairle were notice parties to the action.
When making submissions to the court on the issues of costs, both Ms O’Doherty and Mr Waters said they would be appealing the court’s refusal to grant them leave to mount a legal challenge to the Court of Appeal.
They argued that the court should not order them to pay the legal costs of the State or the notice parties on grounds including that their action was brought in the public interest.
During the hearing today, Mr Justice Charles Meenan asked Gemma O'Doherty to cease making what he described as speeches that were not assisting the court in the decision it had to make. pic.twitter.com/YPb7fVApyk
The legislation challenged includes the 2020 Health Preservation and Protection and Other Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act, the 2020 Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act Covid-19 Act, The 1947 Health Act (Affected Areas) Order.
Their proceedings are also aimed at striking down temporary restriction regulations brought due to Covid-19 under the 1947 Health Act.
The action against what they claim are laws is against The Minister for Health, Ireland and the Attorney General.
Gerard Meehan Bl for the State told the court it will oppose the application for leave to bring the challenge, and asked the court to adjourn the case for two weeks to prepare a sworn statement in response to what is a “quite substantial” challenge.