Ryan wins poll to lead 'broke' Greens
Published 28/05/2011 | 05:00
NEW Green supremo Eamon Ryan will also seek work as an energy consultant because he will not be paid a salary as party leader.
Mr Ryan (48), who was one of the six Green TDs who lost a seat in the general election wipeout for party, was elected leader yesterday.
The former Dublin South TD secured some 40pc of the 550 votes cast by postal ballot in the leadership election.
But with no TDs, no senators and only three councillors, the Green Party is also broke and the newly elected leader hopes to supplement his income as an energy consultant for non-profit organisations.
"Our leadership election has been a positive experience," said Mr Ryan, a father of four.
"We have started to learn lessons from our mistakes and achievements in government and understand the need to protect what we did achieve."
Flanked by the two candidates he defeated for the leadership -- Kilkenny councillor Malcolm Noonan and Phil Kearney, a candidate for the party in Dublin Central in the recent general election -- Mr Ryan said his first task would be to attract a new generation to the party.
"Today we set out on the road to recovery for the Green Party in Ireland," he said. "We need to win back the trust of the Irish people."
A convention to elect a deputy leader will take place next month.
Mr Ryan reminded his colleagues and the media that the Green Party in Germany lost all of their seats in the early 1990s but returned to serve in government.
Former leader John Gormley described Mr Ryan as an "outstanding candidate" and "exactly the right person" to be the new leader.