New Mayor of County Cork to be selected on February 24

New Mayor of County Cork to be selected on February 24
Christopher O'Sullivan won a Dáil seat in the election and no longer holds the mayoral title.

A new Mayor of County Cork will be selected on February 24 by which time it may be clearer as to who will replace three county councillors who have won seats in the Dáil.

Cllr Christopher O'Sullivan won a Dáil seat for Fianna Fáil in the Cork South West constituency and as a result no longer holds the mayoral title. Before a replacement is elected his job will be carried out by the deputy mayor, Cllr Martin Coughlan.

If he hadn't been elected to the Dáil, Mr O'Sullivan's tenure in the office would have lasted until next June and whoever takes over the role will only do so up until then.

A voting pact forged between Fianna Fáil, Independents and Labour ensured he was elected mayor.

The leader of Fianna Fáil on the council, Cllr Seamus McGrath said he assumed that parties supporting that pact would honour it and allow Mr O'Sullivan to be replaced as mayor by another Fianna Fáil councillor.

"I would expect the pact to hold as we sorted out an agreement to rotate (with agreed nominees) the mayor's post over the five-year period of the council," Mr McGrath said.

O'Sullivan narrowly beat off the challenge of Charleville-based Cllr Ian Doyle when the party voted to put up an nominee last June to contest the mayoral election.

While a number of Fianna Fáil sources indicate they expect Doyle to get a free run, others say there may be another vote to decide the party's candidate to replace O'Sullivan.

O'Sullivan, like the other two councillors elected to the Dáil - Cllrs Holly Cairns (Social Democrats) and James O'Connor (Fianna Fáil) - is a member of a party.

Therefore it will be up to their parties to hold selection conventions to find replacements who will then be co-opted onto the local authority.

"I expect a selection convention to be carried out within the next two weeks. It will be open to party members in the Skibbereen electoral area to contest," O'Sullivan said.

Mr O'Connor said he's awaiting news of a selection convention to be carried out in the East Cork area, while Ms Cairns said the Social Democrats will hold their's sometime next week.

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