Former councillor set for return to City Hall; Fianna Fáil defector to remain as independent

Former councillor set for return to City Hall; Fianna Fáil defector to remain as independent
Former city councillor Mick Nugent.Pic; Larry Cummins,

THE fallout from the general election over the weekend will be felt in City Hall, as a co-option and a seat swap will be necessary.

With Sinn Féin’s Thomas Gould’s election to Dáil Éireann, his seat on Cork City Council has been vacated. The process now is that the party will fill the seat.

Former Councillor Mick Nugent is widely tipped to be Gould’s successor on the council, having lost his seat in the local elections last May.

However, he’s continued to play a huge role in the party and was, according to Thomas Gould, pivotal in his election on Sunday as his director of elections.

Speaking at the count centre he said: “Mick Nugent won this election. He was out morning, noon, and night.” 

Speaking to The Echo on the co-opting process, Mick Nugent said that the party in the North West ward of the city will be having a convention shortly to select a replacement for Mr Gould.

At convention, members of the party can put their name forward to be selected.

Mr Nugent went on to say that a special meeting of the City Council could be held in just a matter of weeks to co-opt Mr Gould’s replacement.

Asked whether he would be the prefered candidate for the party Mick Nugent said: “It’s an open process internally.” However, he has admitted that he would like to get back to working as a councillor and taking a place on City Council.

“I would be interested. People have said it to me since Thomas was elected. But, we have a process and I would be respectful of that,” Mr Nugent concluded.

Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil will be member down on Cork City Council with the defection of Kenneth O’Flynn from the party.

He wasn’t selected as one of the three candidates for the party in the general election, and Mr O’Flynn subsequently left the party to contest the election as an Independent candidate.

He wasn’t successful, but was seen to be a huge factor in Fianna Fáil only taking one seat in the Cork North Central constituency.

He will now return to his work as a councillor for Cork, but as an Independent, reducing Fianna Fáil’s representation on Cork City Council from seven to six.

Other councillors who ran in the general election have already returned to their work as councillors, with a meeting on Monday evening.

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