Sinn Féin TD Claire Kerrane has been appointed to Sinn Féin’s front bench as part of what she called “a strong team from the West”.
Speaking following her appointment as the party’s spokesperson on Social Protection, Community and Rural Development and the Islands, Deputy Kerrane said: “I am very proud to be appointed to a strong Sinn Féin front bench team as the lead Opposition party in Leinster House. I am hugely passionate about our rural towns and villages. It’s where I was born and it’s where I live. We need to work to make it thrive and we have much to do.
“I have been the party’s advisor on Social Protection since 2016 and that role has given me a real knowledge of our Social Protection system and the need for it to work for those who need it most. This will be particularly important as we now try to build as a society emerging from Covid-19.
“I am excited for the challenge ahead and I am proud of the strong team put forward by my party from all regions. I have always been immensely proud to come from the West and I look forward to the challenges ahead in this brief and to holding Minister Humphreys to account every step of the way”.
Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil Senator Eugene Murphy has been appointed by the Taoiseach to the Rural and Community Affairs portfolio in Seanad Éireann.
Senator Murphy said: “I was delighted to accept the offer. The Taoiseach spoke about the importance of delivering the programme for Government to the people and as the sole Government representative in County Roscommon and one of only two Government representatives in Roscommon/Galway, I will endeavour to use every opportunity to work and deliver to rural communities but also acknowledging the fact that my role is also to deliver to the wider region”.
The Fianna Fáil Senator went on to say that he would be working closely with Social Protection, Community and Rural Development Minister Heather Humphreys and the Government Chief Whip Dara Calleary to make sure that there was a specific emphasis on economic recovery in the West in the aftermath of the Covid-19 fallout.
“The West in particular will bear the brunt of the fallout in the aftermath of Covid-19 and it is vital that the July jobs stimulus package places particular emphasis on recovery for this region,” said Senator Murphy.