Friday 20 October 2017

Taoiseach Enda Kenny vows: I'll be around for a long time

Taoiseach Enda Kenny in his office in Government Buildings with a portrait of Michael Collins behind him. Photo: Tony Gavin
Taoiseach Enda Kenny in his office in Government Buildings with a portrait of Michael Collins behind him. Photo: Tony Gavin

Group Political Editor

TAOISEACH Enda Kenny is in no mood to hand over the reigns of power, saying he'll be "around for a long time".

As he arrived at Fine Gael's annual Presidential Dinner in Dublin, Mr Kenny refused to confirm reports that he recently told a meeting of supporters that he intends to run in the next General Election.

"I am not responsible for headlines that appear in any paper. Those who were at the meeting know exactly what I said and it was very clear," the Taoiseach said.

He added: "I said I'd be around for a long time."

In a clear indication that he does not intend to step down as leader of the party in the short-time, Mr Kenny said: "We've got a challenging agenda in circumstances where we live in a fragile world."

Noting that this week's European Council meeting had failed to reach agreement on trade deal with Canada and a number of other areas, he said the country requires "clear heads and steady hands on the tiller".

"Europe has got to resolve itself as to where it wants to be in five or 10 years. For us here in Ireland had we not to deal with the Brexit situation we would have a much clearer horizon in terms of where our country can be in the time ahead," he said.

The Taoiseach added that the country should be one that prosperous, peaceful, offers opportunities and looks after "the many social challenges that lie ahead".

"We can only do that if we have an engine to drive it," he said.

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