Indian-origin Leo Varadkar, the leader of the Fine Gael party and a former deputy prime minister of Ireland, was elected as the new head of state following a vote in the lower house of the Irish parliament.
According to Xinhua News Agency, 87 members of the house voted in favour of his candidacy as the new prime minister on Saturday, while 62 members opposed it.
Varadkar announced a cabinet change after being named the new prime minister by Irish President Michael D. Higgins.
According to a list of the cabinet members, former Irish Prime Minister and Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin will take over as deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs and defence, and Simon Coveney, who previously served as the minister of foreign affairs and defence, will take over as minister of business, trade, and employment.
Michael McGrath, who previously served as the minister of public expenditure and reform, will replace Paschal Donohoe as the new finance minister. Donohoe will continue to serve as the minister for public expenditure and reform.
The cabinet is made up of a total of 15 people. The roles that the other cabinet members previously held have all remained the same.
Varadkar is now serving as Ireland’s prime minister for the second time. In June 2017, he was first elected as Irish prime minister. In a coalition administration with Fianna Fail and the Green Party in June 2020, Varadkar’s Fine Gael party served as deputy prime minister and minister for enterprise, trade, and employment.
By the terms of the coalition agreement reached by the three parties, Michael Martin, the leader of the Fianna Fail party, will hold office as prime minister of Ireland up until December 2022, at which point Varadkar, the leader of the Fine Gael party, will succeed Martin as prime minister for the remaining five years of the current administration.