Fianna Fáil TD Jim O'Callaghan has said the Government must move to amend Section 252 of the Children's Act, after the Court of Appeal yesterday ruled that a dead child cannot be identified when someone is charged with killing them.

The ruling also means that the person charged with the child's murder or manslaughter cannot be named if by doing so, the child would also be identified.

Speaking on RTÉ's Today with Philip Boucher Hayes Mr O'Callaghan said the situation was "an absurdity".

The Dublin Bay South TD said that rather than criticise the court, the Oireachtas needs to introduce amending legislation. 

"I think the Government need to move on this, I will bring forward a private members bill but what really needs to happen is Minister (Helen) McEntee needs to attach an amending provision onto the next piece of criminal justice legislation that comes out of her department so that we can have an amendment to Section 252 of the Children's Act to overcome what is an absurdity at present."

Mr O'Callaghan said that yesterday's decision emphasised that the section of the act involved precluded the publication or broadcast of any detail about a child who was the victim of an offence if that detail could identify the child.

He said this means if a child was killed by a family member or somebody close to them, the accused cannot be identified as that might lead to the identification of the child, which he said was "not a feasible situation for the country to be in".

Mr O'Callaghan said people need to recognise that when looking at the statutory provision, the court did not have much of an option and emphasised that it is up to the Oireachtas to act now and "act quickly".

He said it will take legislation rather than an intervention from Minister for Justice Helen McEntee in order to amend Section 252 of the Children's Act 2001 in such a way to exclude, he said, offences that relate to the homicide of a child.

He said it also probably needs to "go a bit further than that".