Enda's man is passed over for local elections
THE Taoiseach's right-hand man in his Castlebar constituency has failed to secure selection for next year's local elections.
Town Councillor Ger Deere who is Enda Kenny's parliamentary secretary, was overlooked by local Fine Gael members at the selection convention for the Castlebar area on Sunday night.
The decision by grassroots Fine Gael members in the Taoiseach's home constituency, is seen as a huge blow to his election plans.
Mr Deere lost out to five other candidates, including Mr Kenny's brother county councillor Henry Kenny. Three other county councillors, Eugene McCormack, Cyril Burke and Eugene Lavin, were also chosen, alongside Castlebar town councillor Brendan Heneghan.
A seventh candidate, Padraic Corcoran, withdrew his nomination prior to the event.
"The convention was to run in the new Castlebar municipal area. They were picking five candidates and I missed out so that's politics and you get on with it," Mr Deere told the Irish Independent.
The new Castlebar electoral area will include eight seats. Mr Deere acknowledged the move was a blow but said he would continue to act as the Taoiseach's assistant.
"It will have no bearing on that and I will be still involved and I have committed to play my part and I'll be 100pc behind the team," he said.
"It was great to be involved in the town council. I'll still be in the thick of it so it's not a real blow to him. His brother has been nominated, outgoing Cllr Henry Kenny, and we work very closely as a team."