The mayor of Limerick City has called  for a vote for public hangings for murders in Ireland. Mayor Kevin Kiely called for a national referendum on the matter last week.

Kiely now says that the families of murder victims and the media should be permitted to witness the executions of murderers.

He said, “I think it is high time that the Government had a referendum on the issue and I am confident it would be passed. There is not enough deterrent there for people who commit murder.”

The outspoken major said that he was confident that the majority of people in Limerick would support his comments.

“There is no deterrent. People who are given life for murder often end up out again after eight or ten years," he said.

Kiely spoke on local Limerick radio, Live 95FM. There was a huge public reaction to the Mayor's comments from the city of Limerick. Limerick’s crime rates have exploded since the beginning of the century with gangland crime and family feuds at the center of most serious crimes.

Live on radio, Kiely said, “I would be proposing that these people, if they are found guilty and it goes through the whole judicial system, that we bring back hanging for them. I have no hesitation in saying that.

"We need a deterrent and the only deterrent is that if somebody takes a life and if it is proven beyond reasonable doubt that it was premeditated, then their life should be on the line too."

Last year saw 53 murders in Ireland along with two manslaughter. The rate of murders in the state continues to rise.

Mayor of Limerick Kevin Kiely