Sinn Fein Councillor Paul Hogan has reportedly refused to allow his name to go forward to the party’s convention for the Longford-Westmeath constituency tomorrow night.
In a statement to Shannonside FM news this evening, the Athlone councillor claims that while he believes he would have enough support to secure a nomination to contest a General Election, he says it would be hypocritical of him to run for the party following a number of allegations made against the party in this region by him.
Earlier this year Councillor Hogan claimed that he had been the subject of long term bullying which the party has denied but he claims that he is still seeking justice in relation to his allegations and that due to concerns over some members, he wishes not to be associated with them and is not participating in the convention.
The statement from Councillor Hogan in full is below:
Former General Election candidate and current Sinn Fein Councillor and Group Leader Paul Hogan has refused to allow his name to be nominated to contest the Longford/Westmeath Sinn Féin convention to be held in the Longford Arms on Saturday, December 2nd.
Speaking today, Cllr. Hogan said:
“I have written to the General Secretary of Sinn Féin and Rúnaí um Thoghcháin to inform them that I will not be allowing my name to be nominated for the Sinn Féin convention on Saturday 2nd of December 2017.
“Having gone through the membership list, I am confident that I would have received the support in excess of 53% of members who were attending the convention. The vast majority of members are good decent Republicans.
“However, I have highlighted a number of issues internally within Sinn Fein dating back some years. I am continuing to seek justice in this regard. I have also indicated that there a significant cohort of listed members who should not be members of Sinn Féin. It would therefore be hypocritical of me to align myself with these individuals and that is the reason I have refused to allow my name go forward for convention.
“I continue to have the unanimous support of the Costello/Hurson Cumann in Athlone and significant support from the membership throughout the two counties. I know there will be disappointment from my supporters on my refusal to allow my name to be nominated.
“I contested my first election in 2004 and in every election since, I have received substantial support. My support increased substantially in every General Election from a very low beginning when I started out first. This culminated in me hitting the crossbar in the 2016 General Election after 5 days of counts and recounts in Keenagh.
“I want to sincerely thank the 7,824 people that voted for me in all preferences and across every part of Longford and Westmeath in the last General Election. I particularly want to thank my team and my supporters for all their help, guidance and assistance over nearly 15 years.
“I am continuing in my work as an elected representative on Westmeath County Council” concluded Cllr. Hogan.