Senator Maura Hopkins has ended months of speculation about her political future by announcing that she will seek a nomination to run for Fine Gael in the next General Election.
The Ballaghaderreen native has revealed that severe back pain, which greatly restricted her movement in recent months, had been the primary reason why she could not commit to running until now.
Asked if alleged tensions between her and Fine Gael HQ had also contributed to uncertainty over whether or not she would run, Senator Hopkins said that the focus of her many discussions with the party hierarchy over recent months was the need for local issues to be addressed by the Government.
Last week the Roscommon People reported that Senator Hopkins had been given a number of deadlines (by which to declare her intentions) by an increasingly impatient Fine Gael HQ, but that these deadlines had all passed. Accordingly, the party’s selection convention in Roscommon/Galway, scheduled for January 25th last, had been called off.
On Monday, Senator Hopkins brought the ongoing speculation to an end when she contacted Fine Gael HQ and confirmed that she will seek a nomination to run for the party in the next General Election.
Senator Hopkins says she expects the Fine Gael Selection Convention for Roscommon/Galway – the only constituency in which the party has yet to select its candidate or candidates – to be held in the near future.
In a press statement, Senator Hopkins said: “I am working extremely hard on behalf of people in the Roscommon/Galway constituency. There are many issues in which I have invested a huge amount of time, energy and commitment, and I want to continue this work for the benefit of people in this region. I set a very high standard and I have been honest, factual and determined in all of my work.
“For health reasons following recent surgery after an injury, it was not possible to indicate my ability to commit until now. After a period of rehabilitation, I am fully recovered and fully focussed on my work.
“I have received a significant amount of encouragement from people to put my name forward. Over the coming weeks, I will be meeting with Fine Gael members in order to ask for their support to represent them and all of the people in the Roscommon/Galway constituency”.