Pat Hardiman, one of the Galway's leading trade unionists, has quit the Labour Party after 36 years of membership, to stand as an Independent candidate in the highly competitive Galway City East ward.
Mr Hardiman is a member, and former president of, the Galway Trades Council and he sits on the Galway City Council's strategic policy committee on transport. He is also a former chair of SIPTU's taxi branch and Mandate executive member. He was, until last week a member of Labour, but he quit over disillusionment with the party's candidate selection strategies and approach, going back to 2017, as well as with the general direction of the party.
His campaign will focus on supporting and promoting measures to see the public and affordable housing being built in Galway city; an "integrated and affordable" public transport system, which would include light rail for the city, an increase in the number of bus lanes, and encouragement of car pooling; and supporting lifelong learning and skills training and education.
Mr Hardiman is also a long time member of Liam Mellows Hurling Club, and he is also campaigning on developing sporting and recreational facilities throughout the city, as well as City Hall providing further support for sporting clubs in Galway. He also wants to see Merlin Park Hospital developed as a new hospital for the city.
"I believe there are two seats up for grabs in Galway City East," Mr Hardiman told the Galway Advertiser, "I have a strong background in the trade unions, I have contacts, and the issues are there for Left candidates."