On Friday I was elected as Chairperson of the Green Party to succeed Dan Boyle. I was the sole candidate nominated for the position so I was deemed automatically elected. The term of office begins on 2nd December and runs for two years.
I’m delighted to be taking up this role at such a crucial time for the Green Party. Since the General Election in February, the party has been rebuilding and remodelling itself to operate effectively with much more limited resources. A key priority for me will be preparing us for the Local and European Elections in 2014. I believe that we can rebuild a strong Green presence at all political levels throughout the country.
Recent developments such as Phil Hogan’s U-turn on climate change legislation, the cancelling of public transport projects and the botched referendum on Oireachtas Inquiries, show that while the other parties claim to have adopted the Green Party’s policies on the environment and reform, this has not genuinely happened. While I was campaigning in the Dublin West By-Election, many people told me they were concerned that the Green perspective was now completely absent from the Dail.
I am confident that over the next few years, we can demonstrate that our policies are essential in addressing the economic, social and environmental challenges that the country faces as we emerge from the recession. I’m really looking forward to working as Party Chair to make this happen.
Finally, I want to pay tribute to Dan Boyle for his work as Party Chair over the last four years and his steadfast dedication to Green politics throughout his career as a public representative.
I have written to the Superintendent in Blanchardstown Garda Station, asking him to request the Traffic Corps undertake random speed checks along Carpenterstown Avenue. This stretch of road is prone to heavy amounts of speeding, particularly at night. It was an issue raised on the doors with me during the By-Election in estates like Bramley, Laverna and Oaktree and again at the recent AGM of the Carpenterstown Park Residents Association.
The stretch of road between the Sycamore roundabout and the Maple roundabout is particularly bad. However, I believe that if the Gardai started implementing a series of random speed checks, this will make a difference. A few motorists getting fines for excessive speed will quickly act as a deterrent. In an area which has such a concentration of young people, it is essential that parents feel their children are safe as the walk alongside or cross the road. I think it is important that the Gardai act quickly on this issue.
I want to offer my sincere congratulations to Patrick Nulty on winning the by-election. I’ve known Patrick since we both studied in Trinity around the same time. Indeed, I remember giving him my No.1 vote in a Students Union President election in 2004. I know Patrick is deeply committed to the cause of social justice and I wish him well in his new role as TD for Dublin West.
I also want to thank all those who voted for me on the 27th. I was extremely happy to come away with over 5% of the first preference vote and almost triple my vote from the General Election earlier this year. I intend to continue to build on this base for the Local Elections in 2014.
Green Party Dublin West representative, Roderic O’Gorman has welcomed the defeat of the Oireachtas Inquiry referendum.
“I was delighted that the Oireachtas Inquiries referendum was defeated decisively across the country and in Dublin West. I was deeply concerned with the scope of the powers that the proposed amendment would have given to TDs, without adequate supervision from the courts. Throughout the by-election campaign, I raised the issue of the referendum with voters on the doors and urged people to vote against it. In light of the real concern I heard from voters about the extent of the proposal, I was not surprised that the amendment was defeated”, stated Roderic O’Gorman.
“The attitude of the Government throughout the campaign was extremely arrogant, particularly the personal attacks that Ministers made against persons who disagreed with their analysis of the provisions. Labour and Fine Gael have promised to establish a Constitutional Convention to review sections of the Constitution. While I welcome this development, I hope the Government learns lessons from the way it conducted this referendum. People will only vote to change our Constitution if the amendments are the result of an open process”, concluded Roderic O’Gorman.
Roderic O’Gorman: 087 417 9777