THE second longest serving councillor in Cork County Council, Kevin Murphy announced recently that he will not be contesting next year’s local elections.
Cllr Murphy made the announcement at the Cork South West Fine Gael convention for the Bandon Kinsale Local Electoral Area (LEA) held in the Munster Arms Hotel in Bandon.
Cllr Murphy said he was actually selected to run for the party from the very same venue in 1988 but felt that now was the time to stand down.
‘I will miss sincerely the meetings and staff in Cork County Council and the satisfaction of getting problems over the line and I worked hard at it. I wish the candidates all the best in next year’s local elections,’ said Cllr Murphy, who also thanked his wife Eileen and family for all their support over the years.
He said he hoped the party can perform well in Cork South West and called for ‘unanimity’ within the party ‘end to end’ in order to perform well in both the local elections and reclaim a Dáil seat once again in Cork South West.
Senator Tim Lombard said Cllr Murphy is a ‘one off’.
‘It’s incredible to think that he will have served over 36 years on Cork County Council. I don’t believe we will see that length of service again,’ he told The Southern Star. ‘I worked alongside Kevin in County Hall for 13 years and experienced first hard his dedication to the people of Kinsale, Bandon, and surrounding areas. Kevin has always been passionate about politics and his role as a public representative.’
Cllr Murphy’s time meant he was the second longest serving councillor in the chamber behind Fine Gael Cllr Michael Hegarty.
Senator Lombard said as a councillor since 1988, Cllr Murphy’s knowledge and experience is ‘unsurpassed’ and that he has always been generous with his knowledge. He also acknowledged Kevin’s wife Eileen’s support.
‘Eileen has matched Kevin in dedication and time over the years and there’s no doubt that she has been the mainstay behind Kevin’s success and longevity as a county councillor.’
Cllr Murphy is the second Fine Gael councillor in Bandon Kinsale to decide not to run in next year’s local election, following Cllr John O’Sullivan’s decision not to run earlier this year. Attendees at the convention applauded both councillors for their hard work and dedication over the years.
Sen Lombard added that the Fine Gael team in Bandon Kinsale for next year’s local elections is a ‘good mix of experience and enthusiasm’ with a good geographical balance across the local election area.
Cllr Marie O’Sullivan said she was delighted to have been selected to run in the locals next year to continue what she considers a work in progress serving the people of my area.
‘Public life can be difficult at times but gives great satisfaction also when you get things across the line,’ she said.
Gerard Seaman, who was also selected on the night, said he is looking forward to working with his party colleagues over the course of the election campaign and beyond, while the third candidate, John Michael Foley, said that as a farmer, business man and employer he knows he has the qualities, passion and ambition to build on what Cllr John O’Sullivan has achieved and bring a new energy to this role.