Meet the Candidates – Sligo / Leitrim General Election – A Current Affair: Episode 172

Today sees a specially extended edition of ‘A Current Affair’ where we want to give each of the candidates an opportunity to reach out to our listeners and explain who they are, what they stand for and why you might consider casting your vote for one of them on Saturday, 8th February.

This episode features 9 of the 19 candidates running in the upcoming election representing 8 of the parties and one of the independent options on the ballot paper next week.

This week Breifne Earley sat down with Labour’s Nessa Cosgrove (3.28), Fianna Fail’s Shane Ellis (15.19), Fine Gael Senator Frank Feighan (27.45), Blaithin Gallagher of the Green Party (41.04), Independent former MEP Marian Harkin (52.19), Sinn Fein TD Martin Kenny (66.55), Aontu Deputy Leader Anne McCloskey (81.56), People Before Profit’s Gino O’Boyle (91.58) & Renua’s Oisin O’Dwyer (100.54)

“I was sick of moaning, I was sick of sitting back and feeling I’d no control over my future.” Nessa Cosgrove (Lab) explains why she put her name forward for this election.

Shane Ellis (FF) laments the lack of a government TD in the county since his father John’s tenure finished in 2007 “Leitrim need their fair slice of the cake, we’re being left behind and I’m there to stand up for the people of Leitrim.”

Senator Frank Feighan (FG) talks about how taking a stand on Roscommon Hospital hurt his career “It was a difficult time. I could have walked but I made the right decision. We needed a stable government.”

Blaithin Gallagher (GP) talked to us about the importance of protecting rural farmers and creating options for farmers to face into the future with more hope. “People are concerned about their own survival economically. The family farm is going to be decimated unless we do something.”

Former TD & MEP Marian Harkin (IND) angrily slams her rivals for spreading untrue rumours about her personal financial affairs and motivations for running in the election. “I gifted over €220,000 (of my pension) to the Irish state. … I gave money to carers and some disability groups over 15 counties.”

“We want to see our children doing better, but when we look at that, we usually see them doing better somewhere else. We need to change that.”
sitting TD Martin Kenny (SF) talks about the need to change the outlook for Leitrim’s next generation.

“Since Brexit we have a defacto border down the Irish Sea. … Now we need to plan for Irish unity. I’m not going to put a time limit on it, but those conversations have started.” says Anne McCloskey (Aontu).

Gino O’Boyle (PBP) speaks about the corruption that’s rife in Ireland and the unnecessary overspend on the new Children’s Hospital. “The problem here with Ireland is that everybody has to get their own back rubbed with the money unfortunately, It’s so corrupt, it’s shocking.”

“There was a danger of pornography and things of that nature being taught to childen and we were strongly against that.” Oisin O’Dwyer (RENUA) discusses the Provision of Objective Sex Education Bill

Each candidate running for election in Sligo / Leitrim was invited to participate in this episode of the show. A sincere thank you to each of the candidates who made themselves available to speak to our listeners.

Part 1: Nessa Cosgrove, Shane Ellis, Frank Feighan, Blaithin Gallagher & Marian Harkin.

Part 2: Martin Kenny, Anne McCloskey, Gino O’Boyle, Oisin O’Dwyer


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