Independent Senator David Norris has said that he is seriously ill with cancer.

In a statement this morning, he wrote: "I am currently undergoing medical management for a serious cancer condition."

He said that he was very grateful for the "superb" treatment he has received at St Vincent’s Private Hospital.

Senator Norris said: "The cancer appears to be related to the initial incidence of viral hepatitis which I contracted from tainted drinking water while I was on unpaid Government business in Eastern Europe in 1994."

The former presidential candidate added that he continues to enjoy life and is "looking forward to returning to [his] duties in Seanad Éireann over the next few days".