More than 15,000 people applied for a job in the Irish police force last week.

Police Commissioner, Fachtna Murphy said that out of the 15,000 applicants only 100 would be given a job.

Murphy added that the embargo on employing civilian staff for administration purposes should be lifted.

Murphy told the Dail Public Accounts Committe that the number of civilian vacancies in the police was 270.

"I believe a substantial number of additional gardaí [police] could be freed for operational duties if these gaps could be filled," said Murphy.

"In many areas, particularly the smaller Garda stations around the country, the work associated with these vacancies must be carried out by gardaí in the absence of sufficient civilian staff to provide the necessary cover."

The Irish police currently employ 14,670 people, of which 2,113 are civilian staff.

Murphy said he hoped lower the ratio of civilian staff to sworn police members from 1:7 to 1:3.

Murphy said the failure to recruit more police in the coming years would be "very detrimental" and affect the forces ability to combat serious crime.

Controller & Auditr General John Buckley said that only 144 police members had been released from administrative duties in the past four years, a figure which he said was "considerably less" than anticipated.

"Rather than putting gardaí back on the street, we were ensuring that gardaí were not taken off the street to fill these important [administrative] roles."

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