KILRUSH town councillor Tom Prendeville has revealed that Fianna Fáil has no registered members in the West Clare capital.
“Within Kilrush there is no registered member within five or six miles. We haven’t got the members. People are not coming forward. So don’t be lulled into a false sense of security and say everything is ok. We effectively tonight sent out a message that we are a rural organisation. It’s inconceivable that where we have the municipal capital of the new electoral area, we won’t have a Fianna Fáil candidate. That’s not good for Fianna Fáil. We are in trouble, big, big trouble in the urban areas,” Councillor Prendeville told Monday night’s selection convention in Spanish Point, where he failed to win a place on the ticket for the 2014 county council elections.
Responding to news that Fianna Fáil membership is non-existent in Kilrush town, Deputy Niall Collins asked why that was the case.
“I’d ask the question why isn’t there members in Kilrush? There’s no point in blaming party headquarters for that. If we are the Fianna Fáil organisation and we’re lacking members in Kilrush well then we’ve only ourselves to blame and nobody else,” he noted.
“We have a lot of problems in our town that are replicated right across Ireland whether it’s crime, unemployment, drugs, illegal money lending or whatever it is. There are the problems and we haven’t addressed them,” Councillor Prendeville pointed out.
He acknowledged that people in Kilrush might not share his pain at his rejection by Fianna Fáil.
“There might be blind indifference out there. People might say ‘we’re fed up with politics at this stage. Ye’re all the same’. If that’s the opinion, that’s fine. I’ve had the honour and privilege of representing Kilrush in the town council for 30 years and I represented West Clare on Clare County Council for 20 years. In other words I’ve been a successful candidate since 1991 on Clare County Council although I lost out in 2009. That was because the swing was against the then government. But at the same time I was within 92 votes of being ahead of Patrick Keane,” he recalled.
In conclusion Councillor Prendeville vowed that his political career is not over.
“On Monday night I got knocked down. But I was back up on my feet within five or ten minutes. I had to get the kicking that I got. And I got a kicking. Not from the delegates; I got a kicking from the Ard Comhairle. I’m up on my feet now and I will make a right decision come the end of January. I’m considering all options and I’ll see what evolves,” he said.