Sinn Féin’s bid to win a Dáil seat in Mayo in the next General Election is officially up and running.
Belmullet’s Councillor Rose Conway-Walsh was selected to represent the party in Mayo at the Mayo Sinn Féin convention held in The Welcome Inn Hotel, Castlebar, on Sunday.
The party is the first in the county to confirm its ticket for the General Election.
Should Cllr Conway-Walsh secure a seat, she would be the first TD from Erris in almost 50 years, Joe Lenehan being the last representative from that region in the 1960s.
Cllr Conway-Walsh said the Erris region is the size of Co Louth, and with a population of 10,000, it is time for a Mayo TD from Erris.
Accepting the nomination, the Belmullet based representative said she is a candidate who is “capable of standing up for Mayo and getting a better deal for Mayo.”
She said she believes many people, such as the young jobless, the farming community, those let down by the health services, and workers not earning a living wage, feel betrayed by their current representatives.
“I will be a TD for all the people in this county who have been let down, trodden upon and denied the leadership they deserve,” said Cllr Conway-Walsh.
She also said it is “intolerable” to see small businesses and self-employed people struggling to meet unrealistic rates, revenue, and charges while multinationals and “cronies of those in power get away with paying little or no tax”.
Cllr Conway-Walsh, who cordinates the Erris Le Cheile community development project and holds an MA in local government, was first elected to Mayo County Council in 2009.
In last year's local election, she topped the poll in the West Mayo Municipal District with 2,078 first preference votes.
Cllr Conway-Walsh was a candidate in the 2011 General Election. She collected 2,660 first preference votes on that run.