6 candidates likely to be on the ballot

Campaigning in the Presidential election will officially begin today as we'll know exactly who's on the ballot.

It looks as though there will be six candidates.

Current President Michael D Higgins is seeking re-election for a second term.

Three businessmen and former Dragon's Den stars will look for your vote - Sean Gallagher, Gavin Duffy and Peter Casey.

Independent Senator Joan Freeman and Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ni Riada round out the ballot paper.

Journalist Gemma O'Doherty is trying to secure a last minute nomination with the backing of 20 Oireachtas members, but is unlikely to secure the required votes.

This evening Michael D Higgins will make his first campaign appearance and take questions from the press.

While the first debate of the campaign is due to happen tomorrow - without Mr Higgins or Sean Gallagher attending.

The deadline for nominations to run for President is at noon today.