Date Published: 21-Jun-2011
By Dara Bradley
Labour party president Michael D Higgins, who received a majority of support from his party to contest the Presidential election, said he has a “very good” chance of winning the race for Áras an Uachtaráin.
The former Galway West TD, who twice served as Mayor of Galway, served in Seanad Éireann and as Minister for Arts, Culture and the Gaeltacht for four years, is the first Galway person to put their name before the people for the Presidency.
Mr Higgins, who had sought to contest the Presidency seven years ago, won 37 of the 62 votes cast by the Labour Party’s TDs, Senators, MEPs and Executive Council members at a Labour convention on Sunday. He defeated Fergus Finlay, who received 18 votes, and former Senator Kathleen O’Meara, who won seven votes.
Mr Higgins is the first candidate to be formally nominated in the race – Fine Gael will decide soon between Avril Doyle, Gay Mitchell, Pat Cox and Maireád McGuiness and possibly others; and other candidates independent Senator David Norris and Irish-American Niall O’Dowd are seeking support to secure a nomination.
Mr Higgins told the Sentinel that he feels he has a “very good” chance of winning the contest, regardless of who is competing in the field.
He told the convention at the weekend that he has the background, skills, experience and credentials for the Presidency. Setting out his stall now that he has been nominated, Mr Higgins said: “What I’m looking to develop is an inclusive radical citizenship in a creative society appropriate to a republic”.
Mr Higgins said he has been campaigning all over the country since last September and is looking forward to meeting as many people as possible in the upcoming campaign.
He is launching a book of his poetry in July and a book of collected essays in September and so had already been booked to appear at several literary events throughout the summer.
He will receive logistical support from the Labour Party for his campaign and has the support of the beaten candidates.
He will use his campaign to debate the rampant individualism that pervaded the country in recent years and which brought Ireland to where it is now. “We need to identify what kind of Ireland we want,” he said.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.
Judge adjourns Connemara assault case
Date Published: 08-May-2013
A date will be set next October for the trial of a 52-year old Connemara man, who is charged with assaulting traditional Irish musician Noel Hill five years ago.
Michael Folan from Teach Mór, Lettermullen, is charged with intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to Noel Hill at Tí Padraig Mairtín Beag in Leitir Mór, on St Stephen’s Day, 2008.
The matter had been listed for trial on several occasions before Galway Circuit Criminal Court in the intervening period.
It was referred to the High Court in Dublin last year for judicial review after Michael Folan said he wanted his trial heard ‘as Gaeilge’and that a bi-lingual jury be made available to hear the case.
At Galway Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Rory McCabe adjourned the case for mention to October when it’s expected a date will be set for trial.
Bank of Ireland Galway Shopping Centre branch to close
Date Published: 10-May-2013
Bank of Ireland’s branch at Galway Shopping Centre on the Headford Road is to close in July.
The branch is to merge into the BOI outlet at Galway Industrial Estate in Mervue.
Galway Bay fm news reports the 14 staff impacted are to be offered redeployment and there will be no job losses.
Galway RNLI rescues three people stranded on Hare Island
Date Published: 13-May-2013
Galway RNLI Lifeboat has come to the rescue of three students who got stranded on Hare Island after getting caught in the tide off Ballyloughan Beach.
The two girls and boy, in their late teens had gone for a walk and were spotted waving from the island by a local resident who contacted the emergency Services and Galway Lifeboat.
Conditions at the time (4pm) were very changeable with heavy showers.
Three members of the Lifeboat shore crew were working in the vicinity of the station at the time and launched the boat in six minutes.
The three students were picked up safely and brought back to the Lifeboat Station at Galway Docks where they were warmed up and given tea and did not require medical attention.