Joe Murphy co-opted on to Council after his brother’s Dáil win

A brother of Fianna Fáil TD Eugene Murphy has replaced him on Roscommon County Council after the latter’s election to the Dáil.

  The party held a Selection Convention at Tulsk last Saturday to select a candidate. Initially, six people accepted nominations: Larry Brennan, Seán Óg Higgins, Joe Murphy, PJ Murray, Seamus Nugent and Aidan Sampey.

  However, four of them withdrew, leaving a battle between Joe Murphy (Eugene’s brother), and Ballaghaderreen’s Aidan Sampey, an unsuccessful candidate in the 2014 local elections. Joe Murphy was chosen after securing 66 votes of the 109, surpassing the quota of 56, while Mr. Sampey secured 43 votes.

  A special council meeting was held on Monday afternoon to formally co-opt Joe Murphy on to the local authority. Councillors warmly welcomed him.

  Joe’s family – his wife Nicola and sons Conor (15) and Oisín (12) – were present to mark the proud occasion. Deputy Eugene Murphy and his family were there, too, and he was widely congratulated on his own success recently.

  Cllr. Joe Murphy, already a community activist, is from Scramogue, near Strokestown, and works as a postman.

  Aged 50, he is a long-standing member of Fianna Fáil and canvassed for Eugene Murphy in the recent General Election campaign.

  His roots in the party can be traced back a lot further, however.

  “My first dalliance…was when I was at boarding school in St Mary’s College in Galway, when we set up an Ógra Fianna Fáil branch,” said Joe.

  “When Eugene entered the council in ’85, I was canvassing up all along the way. I was canvassing for Seán Doherty years ago and I remember being out at Churches with Eugene when he was canvassing for Terry (Leyden).”

  Asked why he sought the council seat, Joe said: “I want the position to help the people. I see so many problems in rural Ireland, in rural communities. I feel that, with a direct link to the TD, we can make a difference.”

  Enhancing the quality of broadband would be among his main issues, he said.

  “Poor broadband is an everyday topic now,” he said, adding that the inadequacies in the service was preventing progress.