Enda in jovial mood as Mayo plan is launched

Posted in Connect on February 28, 2017.

A community plan for Mayo played second fiddle to Fine Gael’s leadership heave when An Taoiseach Enda Kenny launched the document last Monday. The party’s woes were on on the tips of the tongues of community activists across the country as they waited to see if the Taoiseach would fulfill his commitment in Breaffy 48 hours before a vital party meeting.

Cllr Al McDonnell, who got delayed with the Taoiseach at a previous engagement because of a “newfound interest in our county” by the national media, said he was “not prepared to abandon a Mayo man at any time and we’re not prepared to abandon him today”.

County Manager Peter Hynes said the Taoiseach’s presence at such a testing time was “a great honour”. “I thank you sincerely for honouring the committee and on the kind of pressured day that is your day today, your presence is a great honour to us.”

Deputy Kenny made light of his predicament, referring to the photograph of a hiker on a cliff overlooking the ocean in Erris on the front cover of the plan as looking like “a man on the edge”.

He was eager to get away to Dublin but not before promising Cllr McDonnell that Mayo would not be left out of the national planning framework despite not being included in the latest national plan. With the Wild Atlantic Way and Knock Airport thriving, the Taoiseach said Mayo had an opportunity to fill in the blank spaces and make submissions on its strengths.

County manager Peter Hynes pointed out that Mayo’s Local Community Development Committee was the first to have its action plan published. The plan came together after community groups across the county made submissions on their vision for the county.

Western People – 27th February 2017

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