As time elapses and the counting of votes in the local election become but a political memory, former Independent Councillor, Michael O’Brien reflects upon his five year term of local authority service.
The disappointment of failing to attain re-election to his Council seat remains, but the Moate native can look upon a fruitful period as en elected representative.
“Disappointment remains, most certainly, but I would extend my appreciation to the electorate who chose me for their first preference vote,” Michael commented.
Due to the decision to realign the voting boundaries in 2018, the former Councillor opted to contest the local election in both Athlone and Moate electoral areas, a decision which he does not regret.
“With the boundary being realigned by the committee last year, I felt it would effect my chances of Council seat retention, so I opted to put my name on the ballot paper in both electoral areas and I have no regrets in doing so. I polled 600 first preference votes in Moate and overall, in both areas, 1,400 of the electorate gave me their number one, figures which would have re-elected me in previous local elections,” Michael continued.
Moate, the second biggest town in Westmeath, will now have no elected representative within the Council Chambers.
“It is vitally important that the second biggest town in the county retains a Councillor, not doing so could be to the detriment of Moate, but hopefully those elected will to their utmost pertaining to matters within the locality,” Michael added.
Having dedicated a wealth of time to the local political realm over the past five years, the Moate native referenced the support of his canvassing team throughout the campaign duration as they visited doorsteps and spoke with constituents in both electoral areas in the many weeks prior to polling day.
“I feel that I have made a significant contribution to the district during my term of office, but it is now time to reflect, take time out and enjoy life outside of the local political scene,” Michael concluded.