O'KEEFFE REBUTTAL STUNS RATHCORMAC
Outspoken Fianna Fail TD Ned O’Keeffe has confirmed that he told the chairperson of the parents' council of a local national school that ‘there are no votes for Fianna Fail in the school’s village when approached for help in securing funding from the Department of Education.
Claire O’Flynn, chairperson of Rathcormac’s Scoil Bhride Parents' Council said that Deputy O’Keeffe made the ‘disgraceful’ remarks when she contacted him on the ongoing issue of overcrowding and the reliance on temporary classrooms at the school.
“He said that he had no votes in Rathcormac and that he would only speak to people in places where he had votes. He said that as far as Fianna Fail were concerned Rathcormac was ‘no use to us’ and asked me who I voted for,” Mrs O’Flynn said.
Mrs O’Flynn added that Deputy O’Keeffe suggested that his son, Cllr Kevin O’Keeffe, polled badly in the village at the recent local elections.
“Of course the people of Rathcormac will support their local man,” she continued, referring to newly elected Fine Gael Cllr Pa O’Driscoll - a Rathcormac native - “but surely politicians should realise that it’s not a vote against the others.”
Speaking to The Avondhu Deputy O’Keeffe reiterated his belief that there are no votes for his party in Rathcormac.
“I also said what was told to the people of Rathcormac already by the Minister for Education Batt O’Keeffe, that the new school would be built when the Government has the funds to do so,” he added.
Approximately €83,000 is spent annually on maintaining 10 prefabricated units in Scoil Bhride, which caters for over 200 students and currently has two permanent classrooms in the original school building. The proliferation of prefabs in the school was cited as contributing to the extensive flooding in the school yard last February that prevented some children from going into their cabin classrooms.
The school management is awaiting the go-ahead from the Minister for Education to build a new school on a site in the village purchased in 2006.
“Our campaign is continuing, we are not sitting down anymore,” Mrs O’Flynn added.
The Parents Council are planning a range of activities to highlight the ongoing issues at the school, with a ‘positive protest’ planned at a national Fianna Fail meeting to be held this summer. A flyer campaign and placards in the village of Rathcormac are expected in the coming months.
Friday 26th June 7:02pm