Updated: 04/10/16 : 06:09:18
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Varadkar laughs off Budget gaffe

Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar has explained why he accidentally said that the leader of Fianna Fáil will be delivering next week's Budget speech.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, Minister Leo Varadkar mistakenly said that details of Budget 2017 will be announced in the Dáil by Fianna Fáil's Micheál Martin, instead of the Finance Minister Michael Noonan.

Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil has said there should not be any major surprises in store for Budget 2017.

The party claims that much of the detail has already been pre-determined through the Confidence and Supply Arrangement they brokered with the Fine Gael minority government earlier this year.

However, Minister Varadkar said it is still not clear exactly what Fianna Fáil wants to see in the Budget, and said that no decisions about the Department of Social Protection's spending have yet been finalised.

Minister Varadkar has since explained why he accidentally mentioned the Fianna Fáil leader in relation to the Budget.

"We'll, you'd be suggesting of course [that] Fianna Fáil have only got under my skin for the last few weeks, but they've been doing that for about a decade now," he laughed.

"Ah look it, the Budget negotiations are always an interesting period in the political cycle.

"The Budget is still under negotiation, and we will agree a Budget.

"The Budget will be agreed, obviously, by the Cabinet, and will then be put to the Dáil or at least announced to the Dáil next Tuesday by Michael Noonan and Paschal Donohoe."