Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore has said the Household Charge will have to be paid by the 31 March deadline.

Mr Gilmore said there are no plans to extend the deadline and said anybody who was suggesting the charge would not have to be paid is misleading people.

He said there are a number of ways that people can pay the charge, including online and through local authorities.

Mr Gilmore reiterated that the Household Charge was an interim charge pending the introduction of a property charge.

However, Sinn Féin's Pearse Doherty has claimed the people have made up their minds about the charge and they are not going to pay it.

Mr Doherty said the Government is going to deem up to 1m of its citizens "law-breakers" on 31 March when they fail to pay

He noted that the deadline is the same day as day the latest promissory note for Anglo Irish Bank is due to be paid.

Mr Doherty said the people want the charge scrapped, which is why he and many people in Sinn Féin are not paying it.

Elsewhere, a spokesperson for the Department of Environment said that procurement issues and time constraints meant An Post could not handle payment for the Household Charge.

However, they said that forms can be collected from post offices and it will deliver a second 'final reminder' leaflet.

300,172 households had paid the household charge as of 5pm today, according to the Department of the Environment.

Approximately 1.6 million households in total are liable for the charge.