Tuesday 17 September 2019

FG TD John Perry in High Court over selection convention

John Perry
John Perry

Mary Carolan

FINE Gael TD John Perry has secured court permission to serve notice on the party of his intention to seek injunctions aimed at securing his selection as a Fine Gael candidate for Sligo Leitrim in the general election.

Mr Perry was in court today when his lawyers secured permission from Mr Justice Paul Gilligan to serve short notice of the injunction application. The judge returned the matter to December 9th.

Mr Perry wants injunctions restraining Fine Gael ratifying any candidate to contest the forthcoming general election for the party in the Sligo Leitrim constituency.

The injunctions are sought pending the outcome of his full action against the party over the failure to select him at a party convention last month. Two candidates were selected by the Convention, Deputy Tony McLaughlin and former TD Gerry Reynolds.

Mr Perry failed to be selected by a margin of ten votes.

He has alleged Taoiseach and Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny had given a pledge no sitting TD would be deselected.

He also alleged that a party branch that was supportive of him was not permitted by FG party headquarters to register for the Convention.

In court today, Micheal P. O'Higgins SC, for Mr Perry, sought liberty to serve short notice of the injunction application againbst Fine Gael United Ireland and the executive council of Fine Gael.

Counsel said he wanted various orders and there was a degree of urgency as it concerned a selection convention held on October 16th and the next stage in the election machinery.

Unless an injunction was granted, the next stage would be ratification of the candidates which would be triggered by the announcement of the general election.

Mr Perrry was concerned that publication of any election material would put him at an electoral disadvantage, counsel said.

Publication of such material were matters outside his client;s control, counsel added,

The matter had been subject of considerable correspondence with a view to avoiding the necessity for proceedings but that had proven unsuccessful to date, Mr O'Higgins said.

Mr Justice Gilligan said he would grant short serviced and return the matter to December 9th.

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