A major split has emerged among Fianna Fáil members of the new 40-seat Limerick City and County Council.
The party ended up with the biggest grouping after the weekend election with 13 members.
Last night four of them indicated that they intend to break away from the party and form their own Independent block.
It is believed they are unhappy at the turn of events when the Fianna Fáil group met for the first time yesterday to elect their leader, deputy leader and secretary.
James Collins, a first cousin of the Fianna Fáil justice spokesman, Niall Collins, was elected deputy leader.
He said after the meeting that they would consider an alliance with Sinn Féin to gain control of the new council.
Sinn Fein have six seats on the new council, Fine Gael 12, Labour have three 3, the Anti Austerity Alliance another three, and three independents.
If the split is not sorted out, Fine Gael will be in a very strong position to take control of the new council.