Friday 9 December 2016

Stephen Donnelly: 'I'm not work-shy and former Social Democrat colleagues are sticking the boot in'

Niall O’Connor Political Correspondent

Published 06/09/2016 | 16:58

Former Social Democrat TD Stephen Donnelly Photo: Fergal Phillips
Former Social Democrat TD Stephen Donnelly Photo: Fergal Phillips

INDEPENDENT TD Stephen Donnelly has accused his former Social Democrats colleagues of sticking “the boot in” over his decision to quit the party.

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Mr Donnelly said he is “disappointed” by the reaction from deputies Roisin Shortall and Catherine Murphy and rejected suggestions that he is “work shy”.

“I can probably be fairly accused of a lot of things but being work shy certainly isn’t one of them,” Mr Donnelly told Declan Meehan on his local radio station East Coast FM.

“I’ve worked night and day for the last six years. Everybody knows that. I don’t need to make that point. I was very disappointed to see them say it. It’s not true. They know it's not true. But I guess they have to say something,” he added.

Mr Donnelly said his departure has been “coming for some time”.

“You have to try new things. You have to agitate for change,” he said, adding that the move was not “naive”.

The Wicklow/East Carlow TD said the “top team didn’t work” referring also to Catherine Murphy and Roisin Shortall.

“Obviously they decided to stick the boot in. It’s certainly gone down very badly. It’s annoyed a lot of people in Wicklow.”

On the prospect of joining Fianna Fáil, Mr Donnelly said the issue will be discussed with his supporters.

“That’s for Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, the Greens. My head is so far away from that. It’s speculative.”

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