It will now take the intervention of Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, to resolve the fallout from last Sunday’s Inishowen Fine Gael convention which saw Buncrana mayor, Peter McLaughlin , depart in controversial circumstances.
Despite overtures from party apparatchiks earlier this week to the Buncrana representative there was no resolution at the time of going to press.
Speaking with the Journal yesterday Colr McLaughlin was still clearly unhappy.
“As far as I’m concerned unless I get assurances from the top I’ll not be changing my mind.
“I have acted in good faith and in the best interests of Fine Gael and in my opinion it’s up to them to sort this out now, not me”
Prior to last Sunday’s convention in Buncrana it was agreed that Colr McLaughlin would join outgoing councillors Bernard McGuinness, Mickey Doherty and John Ryan on the party ticket in Inishowen for the forthcoming local elections.
He only learned on Sunday morning that the party had changed its mind and were dropping him from the ticket.
But worse was to follow - it subsequently emerged party officials had approached another councillor, Nicholas Crossan, an independent, to run under its banner
Colr McLaughlin said he was not now playing games in regard to this issue.
“What happened to me was not nice. I accept these things happen in politics but I don’t think I deserved to be treated like this.”
He confirmed that the party’s Constituency Chairperson, Oliver McDevitt, and F.G. organiser, Darragh Kelly had visited him this week but that nothing had been resolved.
“With respect it’ll take someone at a higher level than these people. These are the two people who orginally approached me to put my name forward and look what happened.”
Asked who or what would make him change his mind he replied: “Enda Kenny”.
He commented: “I supported Enda when they tried to shaft him, now I think he can take time to support me.”
With his three party colleagues in Inishowen backing him ‘to the hilt’ Colr McLaughlin said he would also want assurances on a number of local issues before making a return.