Independent candidates basked in South Roscommon Athlone electoral area glory following the local election count conclusion in the Dr. Hyde Centre on Sunday night.
Independent Councillors will now occupy two thirds of the six seats available when the Athlone electoral area reconvenes in June.
Returning to his elected representative role, Independent Tony Ward topped the poll with 1,864 votes. He was elected upon completion of the first official count, alongside outgoing Councillors, former Fianna Fáil party member, Ivan Connaughton and John Naughten of Fine Gael, all of whom surpassed the quota which was set at 1,412 votes.
Six counts elapsed before the remaining three candidates were deemed elected following the transfer of Malachy Hand’s (Fianna Fáil ) votes which totalled 846. John Keogh of Fianna Fáil surpassed the quota with a tally of 1,483 votes, while both inaugural Independent candidate, Donal Kilduff, who enters the local political realm for the inaugural time, and fellow Independent, Laurence Kilduff receiving confirmation of their election without reaching the quote required.
Upon reflection, Independent candidates received 52.77 percent of the first preference votes in the Athlone area. Fianna Fáil received 24.05 percent of the vote, Fine Gael received 19.35 percent, while Sinn Fein received 3.83 percent.