Bit­ter words as Har­ris coun­cil seat is filled



AT A RE­CENT Fine Gael con­ven­tion Grainne McLough­lin was co-opted to the seat of newly elected deputy, Si­mon Har­ris spark­ing out­rage from her op­po­nent, Cllr. James O’Sullivan.

Cllr. O’Sullivan was de­feated by five votes dur­ing the con­ven­tion and when ad­dress­ing those present said ‘sadly, tonight I am not be­ing judged on what I have achieved since my elec­tion, or what I could achieve on Wick­low County Coun­cil. I be­lieve the ac­tions of some in the lead up to this con­ven­tion have not been mo­ti­vated by our com­mu­nity’s in­ter­est, and cer­tainly not by our party’s in­ter­est, they have been mo­ti­vated solely by self­in­ter­est. This is old school pol­i­tics at its best.

‘This County Coun­cil co-op­tion should not be about find­ing some­one a job or about per­sonal al­le­giances. It ought to be about find­ing the most qual­i­fied and ca­pa­ble per­son to serve our com­mu­nity. It should also be about who is most likely to re­tain the seat for Fine Gael in 2014.

‘This is a se­ri­ous time and I am se­ri­ous about tack­ling the prob­lems we face and im­prov­ing our county. I am not in­ter­ested in be­ing a Coun­cil­lor for the sake of be­ing a Coun­cil­lor. I am not mo­ti­vated by per­sonal gain. I be­came in­volved in pol­i­tics be­cause I wanted to make a dif­fer­ence in my com­mu­nity and to serve my party.

‘It is my be­lief that the real test of democ­racy is in the bal­lot box; not in con­trived party pol­i­tics. My record, since be­ing elected, speaks for it­self and I’m sure it will be re­flected in the next lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tions.’

Af­ter the se­cret bal­lot he was de­feated by Grainne McLough­lin who re­ceived 28 votes while he re­ceived 23 votes.

Af­ter the vote Ms. McLough­lin said ‘it is in­deed an hon­our to be elected by my fel­low mem­bers in the Grey­stones Branch of Fine Gael and I look for­ward to the chal­lenges ahead and to fol­low on the su­perb work that Si­mon Har­ris did and con­tin­ues to do for all the elec­torate.

‘Go­ing for­ward, I will be fight­ing to get the hoard­ings re­moved so that the har­bour can be re­turned to the peo­ple - for the use of the peo­ple. I will be fight­ing for the de­vel­op­ment of the com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties with the pri­mary care unit so that at least, in the short term, the south end of the de­vel­op­ment is com­pleted and its space utilised to the full.’

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