WITH just over three months to polling day, local election candidates are ready to hit the ground running with recent conventions finalising both FG and FF candidates.
Controversial boundary changes have carved the area into two new municipal districts, making the fight for the nine available seats in the West Cork MD and the six in Bandon-Kinsale MD tougher than ever.
At an uncontested convention in Bantry last weekend, former TD Noel Harrington went through on the FG ticket, along with newcomer John Dinneen, who works in Barrett Agri and who has close links to St Colum’s GAA.
Joining them is Katie Murphy, grandaughter of former TD Michael Pat, and daughter of a former county councillor of the same name.
No female candidate was selected by the party on Saturday night in Bandon-Kinsale, which the source said could be ‘problematic.’
Initially there were six names – Ciarán Keogh, Belgooly; Cllr Kevin Murphy, Kinsale; Cllr John O’Sullivan, Courtmacsherry; Marie O’Sullivan, Kinsale; Catherine O’Donoghue, who works with Minister Jim Daly, and Gerard Seaman of Dan Seaman Motors.
Ciarán Keogh withdrew, with John O’Sullivan, Kevin Murphy and Gerard Seaman selected.
In December, Karen Coakley, a former Mayor of Skibbereen, and newcomers JJ Walsh and Yvonne Cahalane, were selected for Fine Gael in West Cork.
Meanwhile, in Dunmanway on Monday night, Fianna Fáil selected sitting Cllrs Christopher O’Sullivan and Joe Carroll. They were joined by Deirdre Kelly, who works with FF deputy Margaret Murphy O’Mahony, joining Patrick Gerard Murphy and George Gill in West Cork.