John O’Donoghue steps back from local election bid

Former Government minister John O’Donoghue has withdrawn his attempt to seek a nomination to contest the next local elections for Fianna Fáil in Kerry.

The party confirmed Mr O’Donoghue, 62, withdrew his name yesterday morning, but gave no reason.

The selection convention for the Kenmare municipal District, which includes Mr O’Donoghue’s native Caherciveen, is scheduled for December 17 in Waterville.

There was some surprise locally when news broke in October that he was considering entering the ring.

The three sitting Fianna Fáil councillors, Waterville-based Norma Moriarty and Glenbeigh/Killorglin-based councillors Michael Cahill and John Francis Flynn, are all going forward.

Since losing his Dáil seat in 2011, Mr O’Dongohue, who is also a former ceann comhairle, has been keen to re-enter politics.

Caherciveen, which was represented by both his late mother and father, as well as both Mr O’Donoghue and his brother Paul, no longer has its own local representative.

Mr O’Donoghue, who has since qualified for the bar, has remained an active member of Fianna Fáil locally and is understood to have joined at least one local development organisation in recent weeks.

Under boundary revisions, the current nine-seater South and South West District, the country’s biggest, has been split into two.

The Kenmare municipal district, which includes Killorglin, will again be a six-seater in the next elections. Seven sitting councillors will vie for the six seats, including Johnny Healy-Rae (Ind) and Fine Gael’s Patrick O’Connor-Scarteen.

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