Controversial by-election candidate Verona Murphy is to stand in the forthcoming General Election as an Independent without “fear of being silenced”.
The President of the Irish Road Hauliers Association who has stood back from her role announced this morning (Tuesday) that she will run after “taking time out” over the Christmas and new year period, to consider her options.
In December, Ms Murphy said on South East Radio that she was “silenced” by the Fine Gael party as a result of controversial remarks in relation to asylum seekers.
Announcing her intention to run, Ms Murphy said that being Independent means that she "will have the freedom to speak and that allows me to highlight issues without fear or favour or without fear of being silenced".
The outspoken candidate set out her stall for her electoral manifesto.“I’m going to be campaigning on a lot of issues but my main issues are going to be developing the potential of Rosslare Europort, address the Dublin/rural disconnect and be that voice for Wexford.
“I want to also improve mental health services for Wexford, this county needs a University and we absolutely need to improve the supply of housing through the current planning network”.
The Taoiseach previously said he decided to drop Ms Murphy as an election candidate as her apology over her comments about migrants wasn’t "sincere”.
Ms Murphy came second getting 23.8% of the first-preference votes in last November’s by-election defeat to Fianna Fáil’s Malcolm Byrne. The election was held due to a seat vacated by Mick Wallace on his election to the European Parliament in May 2019.
Local newspaper the New Ross Standard suggests that councillors Brídin Murphy and John Hegarty are being considered as options in terms of replacing Ms Murphy on the Fine Gael party ticket for Wexford.
The current TDs fighting to reclaim their seats in the five-seat constituency will be Fianna Fáil’s Malcolm Byrne and James Browne, Fine Gael duo Michael D’Arcy and Paul Kehoe, Labour’s Brendan Howlin.