THE Labour Party and Sinn Féin have added further candidates to the upcoming local elections.
The Labour Party have decided to run a second candidate, Dermot Hayes, in Ennis area. Seamus Ryan was already selected by the party.
According to the party, they have been getting a positive response on the canvas and believe there is a good opportunity for two candidates to be elected to Clare County Council.
Dermot Hayes comes from Kells, Corofin from a family of 13 children. He attended Ennis Community College and, as a mature student, studied Community Development in Galway and Maynooth Universities. He has lived in Ennis since 1974, is married to Marian and they have two teenage daughters.
He worked in Belvedere Carpets, Studio Eyewear and Interton Electronics and more recently in a number of community and voluntary organisations, including The Disabled People of Clare, Clare Supported Employment and People With Disabilities in Ireland.
Dermot has been unemployed on three occasions and he retrained each time to land new jobs which suited his skills and ability. According to Dermot, he personally understands the difficulty and stress of living on the dole.
Dermot was an active SIPTU trade unionist for many years, including being chairman of Clare Trades Council. He is a community leader with experience in building co-operation with public bodies and voluntary organisations and has been involved in projects such as the Clare Bus, INIS housing association, lobbying for disabled access in public buildings and Save Mullaghmore.
Meanwhile, Sinn Féin have announced their candidate for the Ennis area is Cathal O’Reilly, who lives in Corrovorrin. He was unanimously selected at a party event in the town last week.
Cathal’s family on both sides have been traders in Ennis for generations. He said, “I suppose my grandparents would be the best known of my family. My grandmother was May Lyons whose family owned Lyons’ Bar at the top of Parnell Street and my grandfather was John O’Reilly, who owned O’Reilly’s butchers shop at the bottom of Parnell Street. I’ve followed in his footsteps and work as a butcher in the town”.
When asked why he was standing for council he said, “I care strongly about my homeplace. It’s terrible to see the state of not only Clare but the whole country. I want to be part of the fight-back and recovery. I want a better future for my children. I believe Sinn Féin have the best policies to achieve that. We’ve been proven right numerous times over the years. For instance, we warned about the over-reliance of the State on construction and consumption and of the need to reform the banking system. Our policies were dismissed as ‘fairytale economics’ by the very politicians, whose own policies destroyed the economy”.
“This is the first time I have run for election and I’m really looking forward to it. There’s a real buzz around the party and I’ve been delighted with the pledges of support I’ve received already. I’m also grateful to my comrades for selecting me,” he said.