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Local Papers Commentary
From the Connaught Telegraph 23 March 2005
By The Jaundiced Eye
26, Mar 2005 - 17:32

Council in astonishing snub to Bertie Ahern

MAYO COUNTY Council has delivered an astonishing political snub to Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern. The elected members of the authority rejected a proposal to nominate him for the European of the Year Award. Instead, they chose former Fine Gael leader John Bruton despite the fact he won the accolade in 1996 and is presently working as an ambassador for the EU in Washington. The Fianna Fail party wanted Deputy Ahern nominated in recognition of his successful term as president of the EU and his influential role in the Irish peace process. But Fine Gael blocked the move and declined to withdraw the nomination of John Bruton despite pleas from the Fianna Fail benches. The matter was put to a ballot and John Bruton emerged as the winner by 14 votes to 12. Four members were absent for the vote, including Sinn Fein’s Gerry Murray, a former member of Fianna Fail.

The only astonishing thing I see about this vote is that Mayo County Council now has a Fine Gael majority. Does the writer of the piece seriously expect a FG majority to vote for a FF candidate no matter how worthy? And not that JB doesn’t have some serious European credentials.

Fundraiser for Castlebar’s ‘tsunami angels’

TWO CASTLEBAR girls, Catriona Keane and Brenda Carney, who will soon travel to Sri Lanka to work as volunteers with children who were orphaned by the recent tsunami, will hold a fundraiser in the Imperial Hotel on Sunday night (Easter Sunday) starting at 8 p.m. Catriona and Brenda will spend three months helping orphaned children with lessons and homework and cleaning up beaches.

It’s great to see the Castlebar contribution continuing in the drive to help in the recovery effort and more power to the two ladies heading out to Sri Lanka to help out. Three months later the effects of the tsunami ripple on. Yesterday Oxfam reported that they estimate that four times as many women as men perished in the tsunami. This will have all sorts of unforeseen consequences – the opposite of war deaths when there is a dearth of men afterwards. Ominous signs of what is to come as a result reported already – forced marriages, etc. It’s bad enough that whole families were wiped out together with all their homes, belongings and livelihood without the survivors having to deal with deep psychological problems brought on by a serious imbalance of the sexes. In any case get out and support Catriona and Brenda in their brave endeavour.

Man charged with murder of traveller

A 6I-year old Co. Mayo farmer was remanded in custody when he appeared at Ballina District Court yesterday (Tuesday) charged with the murder of a 43-year old man last October. Padraig Nally of Funshinagh, Cross, will appear again before Judge Mary Devins at Ballycastle Court today (Wednesday). Early yesterday (Tuesday) he was arrested at his home and brought to Ballinrobe Garda Station where he was charged with the murder of John Warde at Funshinagh on October 14th last.

I can see this one generating quite a lot of heat before the final judgement.

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