Green Party councillor Pippa Hackett elected to Seanad

The newest member of the Seanad has promised to represent farmers who want a new vision for agriculture in Ireland that is in tune with the environment and biodiversity.

Green Party councillor Pippa Hackett elected to Seanad

Green Party councillor Pippa Hackett has been elected to fill the Seanad vacancy left by MEP Grace O'Sullivan.

The newest member of the Seanad has promised to represent farmers who want a new vision for agriculture in Ireland that is in tune with the environment and biodiversity.

Ms Hackett, who was first elected to Offaly County Council in May of this year, was the sole candidate put forward for the vacancy after Fianna Fáil agreed to back a Green Party representative for the position.

"I am looking forward to being a voice for rural Ireland, and I will be honoured to also represent the people of Offaly and Laois as their sole Senator," she said following her election.

This is the first vacant Oireachtas position to be filled following May's European Parliament elections. The four Dáil by-elections to replace TDs who have also taken up seats in Brussels will take place on November 29.

Fianna Fáil have selected councillor Pádraig O'Sullivan as their candidate to fill the seat vacated by Billy Kelleher in Cork North-Central. However, he will face competition from a number of strong contenders including Fine Gael Senator Colm Burke and Sinn Féin's Thomas Gould.

In Wexford, where Mick Wallace's Dáil seat is up for grabs, there is likely to be a tight contest between Fianna Fáil's Malcolm Byrne, who put in a strong performance in the European Elections, and president of the Irish Road Haulage Association Verona Murphy who is Fine Gael's candidate.

The two remaining seats are in Dublin North, where Independents 4 Change politician Clare Daly took a European seat, and Dublin Mid West which Frances Fitzgerald represented before her election to Brussels.

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