BREAKING/WATCH: Michael Collins elected Mayor of Limerick

Nick Rabbitts at the Limerick Racecourse

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Nick Rabbitts at the Limerick Racecourse

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BREAKING/WATCH: Michael Collins elected Mayor of Limerick

Limerick's newest mayor, Cllr Michael Collins of Newcastle West

FIANNA Fail councillor Michael Collins has been elected Mayor of Limerick City and County.

The Newcastle West man, an auctioneer by trade, secured the chain of office after winning 31 of the 39 votes available at the annual general meeting of the local authority. Cllr Kevin Sheahan was not present.

The ceremony was held at the Limerick Racecourse in order to ensure social distancing regulations were adhered to.

His election comes as part of a Fianna Fail-Fine Gael power sharing pact.

There was also a nomination for Green Party councillor Sean Hartigan.

Meanwhile, fellow Fianna Fail member Abul Kalam Azud Talukder, who made history when he became Limerick’s first Muslim councillor, was elected as deputy mayor.

He beat off competition from Labour member Conor Sheehan.

Cllr Collins becomes the second mayor of this council term as part of grand coalition deal, which saw Fine Gael man Michael Sheahan take the chain of office last year.

The grand coalition deal is in place for five years, and will afford Fianna Fail two of the five mayoralties potentially on offer. Fine Gael will take the other two.

The main parties have divided up the roles on the basis of there being five mayor-making ceremonies.

However, following Limerick’s decision to ratify a directly elected mayor, an election for this role could take place as early as next year.