Having announced his intention to run for council in May 2019, Barry McElduff is confident his candidacy will be endorsed by the leadership of Sinn Fein.
The former MP said he had not been approached by the party leadership to run in next May’s elections in Omagh and that the selection process had been “organic” and “grassrootsy”.
For the 20 years Stormont was running West Tyrone was the only constituency that did not have a minister to deliver on jobs, the economy, education, health care and other quality of life issues.
Indifference around selection processes is understandable given the disconnect between politicians and the public.
However, the people of Omagh deserve a bit better than ‘it’ll do rightly’ from those seeking a council seat in the town.
In the Republic, Sinn Fein leader, Mary Lou McDonald will now face questions about how McElduff was able to over-ride party processes, whilst Micheal Martin moved rapidly to quash the ambition of a Fianna Fail member for doing likewise in the same contest.
Indeed, what is to stop other potential Sinn Fein candidates announcing themselves randomly in any part of Ireland if a precedent is set in Omagh?
Barry has again allowed his ego to set the agenda, creating a headache SF in Dublin may not thank him for.
Ciaran McClean, Sixmilecross, Tyrone