Huge support from locals in ballot box after Tania and husband attacked during election

by Rose Barrett
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When the count for Ongar Local Election Area (LEA) was announced last weekend, Independent Councillor for Ongar, Tania Doyle, was initially shocked before her surprise quickly turned to joy and excitement!

Her vote in 2019 for her first time to run for council saw her pull 15 per cent but on Friday, June 7 last, her community turned out in force and voted her home with 2,057 first preferences – that’s 24 per cent of the vote!

“I was so surprised, I had 631 votes of a surplus!” she told the Dublin Gazette.

And to think the serving councillor almost decided to pull out of the local elections after a horrid attack on her husband and herself following postering in the early hours of the morning last month. Three sitting councillors won on the very first count at Weston Airport, including Alan Edge (independent), with Brian Lawlor (Fine Gael) and Emma Murphy (Fianna Fáil) also proving to be big winners at the ballot box.

“I’m here in my Pride colours, it is Pride month and I think it’s really important that we never take Pride for granted and what that means,” said sitting Mayor and successful Firhouse Bohernabreena candidate Alan Edge.

“I’m very proud to be the third LGBTQ+ mayor of south Dublin. My term is coming to an end in a couple of weeks and I think it’s really important that we wear are colours and we’re proud.

“I think that’s a great asset we have in South Dublin and it was very much a part of my campaign; it’s been focused on celebrating diversity.”

In Clondalkin, another sitting independent candidate Francis Timmons was the first to be elected on the first count.

“As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I pride myself in being a voice for everyone,” said Councillor Timmons.

“I’m not here as just a gay councillor of Dublin, but as a representative of everyone in South Dublin City Council who needs someone to trust.

“I’m delighted that the people topping the tallies are not people that will be divisive or will bring hatred into our community.

“At this moment, I also definitely send my solidarity to the trans community that are being targeted relentlessly.

“I have a lot of trans friends myself and I stand totally with them at this time and always.”

The councillor highlighted that the far right has made its way in, adding that this should act as a wake-up call for the government and its policies on issues such as the housing crisis.

“I knocked across many doors and the message was clear; we have two major issues which are housing and anti-social behaviour,” he said.

“We now need to look at why the far right have made gains and what we have done wrong to let that happen.

“We need to ensure that going forward, we have housing for all, not just for some.

“The long waiting lists for the people of South Dublin and everywhere else is just not acceptable.”

Sad Passing

The mother-in-law of a Fine Gael candidate was killed by a cyclist while helping to erect election posters for the party.

Theresa Clarke (70) was crossing the Ranelagh Road in South Dublin, when a cyclist struck her in  the middle of the road at 11pm last Tuesday, June 4.

She was the mother in law of Fine Gael candidate John Clendennen, who was elected to Offaly County Council.

The mother of three, and former teacher and principal of Scoil Aonghusa in Balrothery, Tallaght, died in hospital on Sunday, June 9.

“We’re staying united and trying to deal with the grief of losing someone that was so close and such a tower of strength to her three daughters and extended family,” said Councillor Clendennen.

“She was very proud of her career as a teacher and principal. Her main joys outside of her family was her involvement with Fine Gael as a party and her contribution to it.

“It’s the call no family wants to receive. Whatever she was doing in the area is irrelevant in a sense.

“She was crossing the road and that shouldn’t happen in this day and age.”

Dail Run?

Sinead Gibney of the Social Democrats has revealed  she is going to be running for a Dáil seat after failing in her quest for Europe.

“I will be looking forward to a Dáil run and talking to all the relevant people about what that might look like, where I might run and start preparing for that.”

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