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Wednesday 20 August 2014

Roscommon: Fianna Fail bounce back

Maresa Fagan

Published 25/05/2014 | 19:14

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Fianna Fail bounced back in County Roscommon where it was on course to take at least seven seats with a possibility of another as the counting continued into Sunday evening.

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There was a reversal of fortunes in this local election where Fianna Fail restored much of what Fine Gael had ‘borrowed’ last time out.

While Independents and Sinn Fein saw gains elsewhere around the country this was not apparent in Roscommon, where their share of the vote remained steady on around 30 percent of the vote.

Fianna Fail’s comeback, however, was at Fine Gael’s expense, which saw it’s share fall back to less than a quarter of the vote.

So far just five candidates have been elected – four Fianna Fail, two Independents and one Fine Gael but it looks like it will be Fianna Fail’s day as the party makes an astonishing comeback in County Roscommon.

Castlerea-based Paschal Fitzmaurice stormed home in the Roscommon area on Sunday morning with 1,576 votes, while son of outgoing Mayor Martin Connaughton, Ivan, came across the line on the first Athlone count with 1,414 votes.

Independent Tony Ward repeated his poll topping performance of 2009 to land the first seat in Athlone area late on Saturday night with a whopping vote of 1,712, generously exceeding the quota of 1,388.

This election also brought many surprises with many long-serving councillors and household names being ousted by Fianna Fail’s bounce in support.

Councillors of 15 years standing to suffer at the polls included Fine Gael members Michael McGreal, Ollie Moore, and Sean Beirne, while a recount has been called in Boyle for Liam Callaghan, who secured a vote of 650, well short of the quota of 1644.

Other fallers in this election included hospital candidate Paula McNamara who was ousted by a strong independent vote in the new Roscommon area.

Result so far:

Athlone - 2 IND, 3FF, 1FG; Roscommon – 1FF; Boyle – no candidate elected yet.

Predicted result:

Athlone – 3FF, 2IND, 1FG,

Roscommon – 2FF, 2IND, 1FG, 1SF

Boyle – 2FF, 1SF, 1IND and a battle between FF, FG and IND for the last two seats.

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