Fianna Fáil will ponder its relevance and reasons for existing at this weekend’s Ard Fheis amid a background of continually declining support.
The recent Sunday Times poll showed Fianna Fáil at 16 per cent, down one from their 17 per cent showing at the 2011 General Election. As a result the party has described the upcoming Ard Fheis, which takes place in the RDS tomorrow and Saturday, as “a pivotal moment” in the party’s history.
Hundreds of Fianna Fáil members from across Co Galway are expected to travel to the event, which will be addressed by the party’s deputy leader and Galway West TD Éamon Ó Cuív.
Dep Ó Cuív said the Ard Fheis will give members “a chance to have their voices heard about the future” of the party.
“The purpose of this Ard Fheis will be to reform the party so that our members have a greater role in the direction of Fianna Fáil into the future,” he said.
The move to a one member one vote system is aimed at empowering every member and making the organisation stronger and more responsive to the needs of communities.
Galway East TD Michael Kitt said there is “a real sense of excitement” among Galway Fianna Fáil members about the Ard Fheis.
“We have had more interest from members than ever before in the elections to the party’s Ard Comhairle,” he said. “Among those running for election to the Committee of Twenty on the Ard Comhairle is 25-year-old Jessica Brennan from Galway, Tommy Hannon from Ballinasloe, and Cllr Mary Hoade from Headford. Éamon Ó Cuív is also running for the position of Leas Uachtaráin of the party.”