By Gráinne Ní Aodha, PA
Minister for Justice Helen McEntee is pregnant with her second child, due in December, a spokesman has confirmed.
In April last year, Ms McEntee became the first sitting Cabinet minister in the history of the Irish State to give birth while in office.
A spokesman told the PA news agency: “The Minister and her husband Paul are very happy to be expecting their second child, due in December.
“Minister McEntee intends taking maternity leave to care for their baby.”
Ms McEntee also confirmed the news in a post on Instagram, posting a photo of her first child Michael wearing a shirt reading "I'm gonna be a big brother".
Ms McEntee’s first baby, Michael, arrived just one day after the Minister began six months maternity leave last year.
During that time she remained a member of government, serving as a Cabinet minister without a portfolio until she returned in November.
Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys oversaw the justice portfolio during Ms McEntee’s maternity leave, and some Justice Department duties were handed to Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton.
A Cabinet reshuffle is due in mid-December, when Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar are due to swap their positions as part of the coalition agreement.