Labour TD Liz McManus is to quit the Dáil at the next election, she revealed today.
The Wicklow representative, who has been in politics for 31 years, said she was stepping aside to let new candidates through.
The 63-year-old said she hoped the move would help Labour secure two seats in the county at the next General Election.
“I believe, however, that it is vital that Labour offers new, younger candidates to the electorate at the next general election,” Ms McManus said.
“Our determination must be to win two seats in Co Wicklow. With the right candidates and a strong campaign we can achieve that goal. So I have decided not to put my name forward for nomination at the selection convention to be held later this year.”
Ms McManus is the second female TD in the last week to announce she is leaving frontline politics after Laois-Offaly TD Olwyn Enright, a mother-of-one and expecting a second child, revealed she was bowing out to spend more time with her family.
There are currently 23 women in the Dáil out of 166 seats.
Ms McManus said she will continue as an active member of the Labour Party after retiring from the Dail.
“Ireland is crying out for a fresh start and a new beginning,” she said.
“For many people, times are hard, unemployment and poverty are on the rise. Our society needs a strong and powerful Labour presence in Government. With hard work and dedication, together we can achieve a great result for Co Wicklow. I look forward to working with you to meet that challenge.”
Ms McManus served on both Bray and Wicklow councils before securing a Dáil seat in 1992.