ALLEGATION OF PERSONAL VENDETTAS AT MITCHELSTOWN COMMUNITY COUNCIL
Former member, Bill Power has spoken out about what he claims is ‘unbecoming conduct’ at Mitchelstown Community Council.
Mr Power spoke to The Avondhu this week to outline his concerns at the conduct of some members of the community council.
“For quite some time I have remained silent about the internal operation of Mitchelstown Community Council. Now, that I am no longer a member of that body, I no longer feel that I have to suffer from the constraints of its ‘confidentiality agreement’ which was reduced to a mockery by a few people with personal vendettas,” Mr Power said.
Bill Power was first elected to Mitchelstown Community Council nine years ago.
“I was first elected to the community council with 27 votes, which increased to 35 votes on the second occasion that I was chosen by my neighbours to represent them.
"Back then I believed in the integrity and honesty of the community council’s election procedures. Canvassing was prohibited and, although on one occasion we strongly suspected that canvassing took place, we could never prove it and left the matter lie.
"Mitchelstown Community Council is not a political body but you wouldn’t think that by the way some people behave,” Mr Power continued.
VENEER OF PROPRIETY
“In the past week, I received 48 votes – a whopping increase in the number of people who put their faith in me as the person who could represent them at community level. Thank you for your support, which I very much appreciate.
"I am proud to say that I have good neighbours, especially in Mulberry Lane, and good friends throughout my area. The recent community council election in my area maintained a veneer of propriety and little else,” Bill Power commented.
LOST ITS WAY
However, Mr Power was not re-elected to the community council in the recently held elections.
“In the past, in other community council electoral areas, I saw people elected with as little as 9 or 10 votes. On this occasion, I was not in the least surprised that I was not elected. Indeed, weeks before the votes were counted I predicted that outcome.
“Recently, in circumstances that could be summed up in the late Charlie Haughey’s acronym ‘GUBU’ (grotesque, unbelievable, bizarre and unprecedented), Mitchelstown Community Council lost its way. Croneyism has become a significant element in the community council. Outside influences interfere in its activities in ways that were never allowed in the past,” Mr Power said.
Bill Power continued, “During my years as an officer of Mitchelstown Community Council I have had the pleasure of serving with many decent men and women who did their best for Mitchelstown. We were sometimes faced with tough decisions but never lost sight of wanting to do what was right even though our decisions were sometimes controversial.
"When I think of those ‘good guys,’ foremost in my mind are Delia Tobin, Des Geary, Seamus Kilmartin, Proinsias Condon, Bob Dineen, Hilary Connolly, Jim Keane, Batt Power, Paddy Tobin, John Walsh, Joe Fitzgerald, Michael McGrath, Marie Sheehan-Condon and John McCarthy (Upper Cork St). There was no enmity between us. There was no shafting of anyone. We had a common aim to serve the people who elected us in elections that were always above board.
"In my time as chairman and secretary, I personally raised €454,000 for community council projects by way of fundraising, sponsorships, grants and interest free loans.”
“I was founder chairman of the playground committee and of the food festival. During my four years as chairman of the community council we refurbished the grounds of the Town Hall, planted hundreds of trees and over 100,000 daffodils.
"We supported other local initiatives as best we could. We had loads of fun because we trusted each other and trusted that we were in the community council for the right reasons.”
In conclusion, Mr. Power said he was not sorry to be leaving the community council.
“I am happy to be leaving Mitchelstown Community Council. I really do appreciate the support I received from my neighbours and friends. I wish my friends on the community council the very best but I offer them one warning, ‘watch your backs’,” Bill Power concluded.
The Avondhu put the points raised by Mr Power to the chairman of Mitchelstown Community Council, Sean Finn.
“We have no comment to make at this time,” Mr Finn said.
Former community council chairman, Batt Power was disappointed but not surprised that Bill Power is no longer a member of the community council.
“I am disappointed, Mitchelstown has always been a top priority for Bill and the countless hours he put in over the years have never received the mention they deserve. I know that Bill has become very disillusioned with the community council in recent years; there have been many personal attacks on him, which had forced him to seriously think about his involvement with Mitchelstown Community Council. I wish him all the best for the future, Bill will be a loss to Mitchelstown,” Batt Power said.
Thursday 30th September 6:21pm