The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten has resigned.

Speaking in the Dáil on Thursday afternoon, he told the house that he had given An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar his resignation.

“For my family for my constituents and more importantly for the 1.1m people who are waiting for this essential service, a vital service to ordinary people in rural Ireland, I’ve given An Taoiseach my resignation.

“I wish my cabinet colleagues well and I would ask most of all that the NBP [National Broadband Plan] process is allowed to reach its conclusion over the next few weeks for the 1.1m people in rural Ireland who need this infrastructure now more than ever,” he said.

In recent days, Naughten has come under pressure over a number of meetings he had with David McCourt – who is a member of the consortium which is the lead bidder for Ireland’s National Broadband Plan, which is one of the biggest contracts ever in the history of the state.