Thursday 24 October 2019

Andrews's transfers help elect former FF colleague

Chris Andrews at the count centre. Photo:
Chris Andrews at the count centre. Photo:
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Transfers from Sinn Féin candidate Chris Andrews ironically helped elect his former Fianna Fáil colleague Jim O'Callaghan and Green Party leader Eamon Ryan.

Mr Andrews was a backbencher in the Fianna Fáil-Green coalition between 2007 and 2011 but quit the party following a scandal over a fake Twitter account that was used to abuse Fianna Fáil representatives including Mr O'Callaghan.

He had been heavily tipped to take a seat for Sinn Féin in Dublin Bay South, where the other candidates elected were Fine Gael's Eoghan Murphy and Kate O'Connell.

An Irish Independent poll by Millward Brown showed that he was on course to win 17pc of the votes - but his support appears to have been badly hit by controversy in the latter days of the campaign.

Mr Andrews had been heavily involved in helping the family of innocent murder victim Joseph Rafferty, who is believed to have been killed by a person closely associated with Sinn Féin.

Mr Rafferty's sister Esther Uzell had said she felt betrayed by the city councillor when he joined Gerry Adams's party.

The politician has insisted that he is still available to help the family in the quest for justice if they want.

Mr Andrews comes from a Fianna Fáil dynasty. His grandfather Todd was heavily involved in the early days of Fianna Fáil while his father Niall and uncle David were both TDs.

His cousin Barry was also a minister in the Fianna Fáil-Green coalition.

Mr Andrews topped the poll in his constituency, which was then called Dublin South East, as a Fianna Fáil candidate in 2007 with 6,600 votes. That represented 19.5pc.

As happened with most Fianna Fáil candidates in 2011 his vote plummeted to 3,922 or 11.23pc.

However, despite his change of party and position back on Dublin City Council, his vote slipped even further to just 3,774 votes. This left him in seventh place after the first count.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News