It's one in, one out as 17 still in the Wexford fight

bY dAVID TUCKER

Published 20/02/2016 | 00:00

John Dwyer.
John Dwyer.
Paul O'Hanlon.
Cllr Annette Larkin who was elected as Chairperson of New Ross UDC in the Tholsel last Tuesday night seen with left Dave Minogue Town Clerk and right outgoing Chairman Cllr John Dwyer

THERE are still 17 candidates in the hunt for one of the five Dail seats in the Wexford constituency, despite the 11th hour withdrawal of one of the Independents.

Almost at the same time that outspoken Independent Paul O'Hanlon announced that he was withdrawing from the race, former Sinn Fein and Eirigi member John Dwyer, from New Ross, put his name forward.

Mr O'Hanlon, who had been out canvassing in Wexford the day before his announcement, said he was withdrawing from the fray because of an issue with the returning officer and at the way that nursing home residents are asked to vote because 'it leaves it open to abuse.. in my opinion residents can be swayed in their choice of management not taking into account the residents' medical/mental health and medications'.

Mr Dwyer said he is the only candidate from New Ross who is running in the election, adding that even though he has not been a councillor since 2014, his phone has not stopped ringing since.

'I wasn't planning on running but then I got a leaflet about Brendan Howlin in the door telling unemployed people that they should be working and I couldn't let it go,' he said. A former Sinn Fein councillor, Mr Dwyer was latterly with the Eirigi party, but left party politics after his father became ill. 'I am the only candidate for New Ross and the other candidates from Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil and Labour are the reason we are in this situation at the moment. Even if I put my left wing views to one side, I don't see any of them solving the problems in my constituency.'

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