Saturday 25 February 2017

O Cuiv appointed FF deputy leader

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

Eamon O Cuiv has been appointed Fianna Fail's new deputy leader following the death of Brian Lenihan.

The grandson of Eamon de Valera is the third person Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin has appointed to the role since taking over.

A Fianna Fail spokesman confirmed Mr Martin had delayed announcing the names of Mr Lenihan's replacements as deputy leader and finance spokesperson for six weeks as a mark of respect to him and his family.

Cork South Central TD Michael McGrath will replace Mr Lenihan as finance spokesman.

Mr O Cuiv (61) spent nine years in Cabinet under former Taoisigh Bertie Ahern and Brian Cowen, but a colleague denied his appointment as deputy leader was a sign of the "old Fianna Fail" remaining in place.

He said: "There are many good aspects to 'old Fianna Fail' as well. I think it is up to all of us who are in positions of leadership in the party to carve out a new role and a new identity for the party."

Mr McGrath revealed that Mr Lenihan had given advice to him and new public reform spokesman Sean Fleming TD during the final weeks of his battle with pancreatic cancer.

"I would have maintained contact with Brian on work-related issues up till about 10 days before he passed away. He was a huge help to me," he said.

Irish Independent

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