Carroll not going in just to make up the numbers

Talking Politics

Liam O'Carroll celebrates with his wife Alison and election team members Enda Howley, Pat Flaherty and Ger Costello after he was elected on a recount.

Liam O'Carroll celebrates with his wife Alison and election team members Enda Howley, Pat Flaherty and Ger Costello after he was elected on a recount.

It must have been the shortest term a councillor ever served. Just a minute after returning officer Breda McDermott confirmed that he had won the last seat on Saturday night, Liam Carroll’s first elevation was cancelled as news of the recount was announced.

And as that recount took place all day Sunday, Mr Carroll and his wife Alison sat patiently at one side of the hall, waiting for the end of the dramatic finale in which political fate saw him pitted against his long time friend, Labour’s Enda O’Rourke.

And while he may have been quiet and collected on Sunday, those who know him are aware that he will be far more vocal when he comes to take his seat in County Hall in a few week’s time.

After the count, the by-then Cllr Carroll made it clear to me that he’s not going into County Hall just to make up the numbers.

“I’m the kind of guy who doesn’t take no for an answer. If it can be done it will be done. I speak my mind and I am to deliver for these people and to deliver quality and to seek fair play for them,” he said.

He comes in on the back of decades of service to the burgeoning Oranmore area, in the quest to provide facilities and establish groups such as the juvenile soccer club which provides a fantastic outlet to 480 youngsters weekly.

Although the village of Oranmore ended up with just one of the four seats in its own electoral area, there can be little doubt that Cllr Carroll is the man best suited to shout loudest for them, given his knowledge of what exactly is required.

“The people in Maree and Oranmore know the facilities I’ve put in and the work that I’ve done for the last 12 years as a community activist and that has paid off today with this election.

“I am vocal because I feel passionate about a lot of issues and about the Oranmore and Clarinbridge area. I believe that people in those areas deserve the best and the best is only good enough for them, and I’m going to work as hard as I possibly can to deliver the best for them.”

He came through after a campaign in which the congestion of candidates was the main obstacle.

“It was a very enjoyable campaign fought in a very good spirit. It was tough because the area was very crowded, but we had a small team of about 10 people but it was a quality team. They got the message across to the electorate.

“I feel very sorry for my good friend and colleague Enda O’Rourke. The first thing I did was go up and shake his hand. We travelled to Biarritz together for a Heineken Cup quarter final a few years ago. Politics is politics, but we’ve been friends for 25 years and we will be friends for at least another 25,” he said

 

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