*Robert Frost. Photograph: John Mangan
Political parties must not forget a focus on the grassroots, Fianna Fáil members were recently told in Shannon.
Robert Frost (FF) imparted that message on Fianna Fáil members that gathered for the recent selection convention to vote on who they would propose replace Cathal Crowe (FF) on Clare County Council.
Initially the party had decided to select the candidate following an interview process. This prompted Cllr Pat O’Gorman (FF) to withdraw his name, further pressure from the Clare Constituency Chairman Michael Enright and other officers resulted in headquarters reversing the decision and holding a convention in Shannon.
Such a turnaround was welcomed by Frost at the convention. “I put my name forward because a lot of people contacted me and asked would I go forward, it was a great honour and privilege for me to put my name forward, even though I was defeated I was proud to have done so. I would also like to thank the Chairman of the Constituency here in Clare, Michael Enright for insisting we have this convention tonight.
“On Thursday we were contacted to say we were going to Dublin for an interview, if we go down that road it takes the focus away from the grassroots and this organisation, we’re good enough to pay our membership, to do canvassing, to take up the national collection and to sell tickets for the national draw. It is a great privilege for me to stand before the Convention tonight, it’s all about having a Convention, the grassroots are the people that should be looking after our organisation, if we take our eye off the ball, we will go further down the pecking order”.
A former Chairman of Clare GAA and the Munster Council, the O’Callaghans Mills man congratulated Cathal Crowe and Pat O’Gorman on their respective victories while also paying tribute to Noel Broggy and Louise McNamara. “Thanks to all those who supported me and those who didn’t support me. There will always be another day”.