Only two candidates were selected at last Monday night’s Fianna Fail convention in the Hotel Keadeen instead of the anticipated three, as one failed to show up and the other pulled out of the running.
Councillors Fiona O’Loughlin and Suzanne Doyle were selected to run for the Newbridge and Kildare area in the local elections this May. However a third coveted seat was left unfilled on the night after newcomer Simon Rainsford withdrew his candidacy, while former TD Sean Power was not in attendance.
A letter from Mr Rainsford, who was tipped to be selected on the night, was read out to all in attendance, blaming in party delays and a lack of appetite to revitalise the party from within, for his decision.
A number of delays have dogged the selection convention since last December when it was abandoned after failing to agree on whether three or four nominees should go forward. Cllr Fiona O’Loughlin said it was a ‘very tense evening’. “We were there with the sole purpose of choosing three candidates. It is extremely frustrating that at this point we don’t have our full team.”