Blake expected to be co-opted

Well-known Letterkenny man business Paschal Blake is in poll position to replace Senator Jimmy Harte on Letterkenny Town Council.

Well-known Letterkenny man business Paschal Blake is in poll position to replace Senator Jimmy Harte on Letterkenny Town Council.

The party’s official process to fill Senator Harte’s county council and town council seats will not begin until tonight.

But Mr. Blake is understood to be the party’s first choice for the town council seat and says he will decide this week whether he will take accept an offer from the Labour Party to replace Senator Jimmy Harte on Letterkenny Town Council.

Names linked to the county council vacancy include Letterkenny branch secretary Siobhan McLaughlin, Sean McClafferty, Senator Harte’s wife Mary, Peter Cutliffe and Brian Gribben.

The Labour Party’s Donegal North East constituency chairman Seamus Boivard said the official selection process for both seats begins tonight, Tuesday, when party’s national executive will appoint a three person selection committee compromising of Oireachtas members and or county councillors.

The party will then carry out a rigorous selection process, he said.

“Anyone who is interested can put their hat in the ring,” he said. “Their CV will be requested by head office and their eligibility will be checked and a there will be an interview process after that.

“This could be very quick,” he added. “There is no reason why it should be dragged out.”

Mr. Blake said yesterday he was honoured to be offered the position and was consulting with his family and friends before he made a decision on whether to accept it. He said he would make a decision this week.

He said he had been approached at local and national level by the party to fill the vacant town council seat.

“I am very honoured to be asked as a Letterkenny man to be asked to be in such a position,” he said.

Mr. Blake works as a psychiatric nurse and a undertaker. He is a former assistant director of the Letterkenny Folk Festival and has been involved with the Raphoe Dioceses pilgrimage to Lourdes since 1974. He is also a Peace Commissioner and was recently appointed as Commissioner of Oaths.