Perry plays GAA card in Fine Gael selection row

TD ‘pleaded’ with party and Taoiseach Enda Kenny to add him to the campaign ticket

Taiseach Enda Kenny and the Fine Gael party received pleas from TD John Perry who lost at the selection convention for Sligo-Leitrim last weekend, to add him to the ticket. Photograph: Eric Luke

Taiseach Enda Kenny and the Fine Gael party received pleas from TD John Perry who lost at the selection convention for Sligo-Leitrim last weekend, to add him to the ticket. Photograph: Eric Luke

 

In a row with Fine Gael over the registration of delegates for a selection convention, TD John Perry used the example of a Dublin GAA star who had a suspension overturned the night before a crucial game.

Fine Gael TD Mr Perry lost at the selection convention for the Sligo-Leitrim constituency last weekend and has since pleaded with the party and Taoiseach Enda Kenny to add him to the ticket, which Fine Gael sources say is unlikely.

Mr Perry said he was “disappointed” 50 delegates from Tubbercurry, Co Sligo, were not allowed to vote at convention, a move that had been the subject of a legal threat earlier this year.

One of Mr Perry’s supporters, Michael Fleming, sent an affidavit to Fine Gael in April, claiming members of the Tubbercurry branch had paid Fine Gael for their membership for the year 2014/2015 but had not been registered.

Late registration

He claimed that a number of factors led to the late registration.

Party members are excluded from voting at conventions if they have not been paid-up members for two years.

Fine Gael, represented by solicitor Kevin O’Higgins, argued that too much time had lapsed to allow the delegates to vote at convention.

Mr Perry’s solicitors argued that Fine Gael should “furnish all detail”, including notes and records, regarding their decision.

They said a decision by the GAA authorities to overturn the suspension of Diarmuid Connolly before the All-Ireland semi-final replay against Mayo reinforced their argument.