Donegal European hopeful hits out at Fianna Fáil over election convention

Former TD Niall Blaney says the convention is “completely unreasonable"

Former Donegal TD Blaney fails in Seanad bid

Niall Blaney: appeal to Donegal Fianna Fáil membership

Fianna Fáil European candidate hopeful and former Donegal TD Niall Blaney has hit out at the party hierarchy saying it is discriminating against the members of the Midlands Northwest constituency.

A convention for the European election has been arranged for Friday, March 15 in Longford, with voting from 2pm until 8pm.

Mr Blaney said the proposal to hold the European party convention on a Friday afternoon, in Longford, on a bank holiday weekend “is completely unreasonable and stinks of a stitch up for their chosen candidate”.

He said such conventions are usually held on a Sunday and holding it on a Friday of a bank holiday weekend is a serious disadvantage to the membership in the peripheral counties of the constituency.  

“I am appealing to the Donegal membership to step up. There is a feeling across the constituency that members are not getting fair play. I need Donegal members to get there but I know it is a big ask.

“True republicans don’t discriminate and this effort is showing blatant disregard for the Fianna Fáil membership. Members from all counties on the periphery of the constituency will not get the opportunity to cast their vote.

“How do we expect members who we depend on to fundraise, canvass, and attend party meetings, to keep paying €20 for a vote that’s impossible to get to.”

He said the situation is “giving members the message that they are not important and not wanted or valued for one election is counterproductive when you later ask them to go out and knock on doors”.

“I have spoken to Micheal Martin and he is aware of the concerns and I appeal now that the Fianna Fáil party have it in them to do the right thing on behalf of its Midlands/Northwest membership, the same way they looked after the Kerry members, who had two box locations for their general election convention.”

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