FIANNA FAIL POSTERS NO 'POLE' TOPPERS IN FERMOY
Posters canvassing for Fianna Fail’s European Election candidates have been erected in Fermoy - despite the town’s policy against political advertising from lampposts. The posters, which bear the images of local TD Ned O’Keeffe and Ireland South MEP Brian Crowley were erected on lamp posts on the Dublin Road in the south of the town by The Forge and Wagon Tavern bars. Deputy O’Keeffe said that he would never erect posters in Fermoy town and claims that ‘dirty tricks’ are at play.
“I would know far, far better than to erect posters in Fermoy,” said Deputy O’Keeffe.
“It’s my local area and I know that posters have never been allowed up in the town to help preserve Fermoy’s status as a tidy town. I have also spoken to Fianna Fail headquarters and been assured that they had specified that no posters were to be put up in Fermoy. Given that no one has asked for these Fianna Fail posters to be put up it is very strange that they should have appeared overnight,” Deputy O’Keeffe said.
“Unfortunately I suspect that dirty tricks are at play here. It’s not the first time this type of thing has happened, nor will it be the last. In fact one of my Fianna Fail colleagues, Liam Hayward MEP was told that some of his posters were put up in Howth at the weekend. Given that Liam is running in the East constituency and not Dublin this would be very, very strange.”
“I would like to assure the people of Fermoy that I had nothing to do with these posters going up and that as soon as I was made aware of this issue I had my team remove them. Hopefully there will be no more dirty tricks like this as Fermoy has a long tradition of being poster free and I would hate to see election posters have a negative impact on the Tidy Towns campaign,” Deputy O’Keeffe concluded.
Last February Fermoy Town Council voted six to one in favour of writing to all political parties to ask that their candidates refrain from erecting campaign posters on lamp-posts within the limits of the town of Fermoy in the run up to this June’s local and European elections.
"The Green Party representative for Fermoy Adam Douglas said that if Fianna Fail wish to be a part of the town council it should work with it and respect its decisions, and remained unconvinced by Deputy O’Keeffe’s claims.
“The town council gave a clear indication in a six to one vote in February that they would prefer posters not to be placed on lamp-posts and other poles in the town. The fact that Fianna Fail has not heeded this request shows disrespect for a democratic decision. Posters within an urban environment are unsightly and amount to visual littering.
"I’m pleased that Fermoy has led the way in saying no to posters and that Green Party Minister John Gormley has been to the forefront in drawing up tighter regulation on posters for future campaigns,” Mr Douglas said.
“While this will no doubt be condemned, like so many other things by Fianna Fail, as dirty tricks, the reality is that the origin of these posters has been authenticated, and that if they were not put up by volunteers of the party, they were erected by an outside agency employed by the party, who should have been notified of Fermoy’s poster-free status,” he added.
Mayor of Fermoy Tadhg O’Donovan said that as an election candidate himself he felt it would be inappropriate to comment on the matter but added that he trusted the council executive to follow through on the wishes expressed by the majority of the democratically elected officials of the local authority.
Meanwhile, Mr Douglas said that it was unfortunate that posters from different parties had been placed on ESB telegraph poles, and warned of the dangers inherent in this practise.
“This is the type of thing that would cause great obstruction to works should repairs need to be carried out at short notice, it is banned for good reason,” the Fermoy Town Council candidate said.
Thursday 14th May 6:37pm